Landreau to hang up gloves
SC Bastia and France goalkeeper Mickaël Landreau, who has played more top-flight games than anyone else, has confirmed that he will retire from football this summer.
Landreau, who turns 35 on Wednesday, May 14, is ready to call it a day, almost 18 years after making his senior debut with FC Nantes as a bright-eyed teenager. He made the announcement after receiving a trophy of honour from France's Players' Union at the Player of the Year awards ceremony in Paris on Sunday.
"I thought hard about it," Landreau said. "I need to spend time with my family. I will continue to study training and management. I will also do some work as a television pundit."
Back in December, Landreau equalled former Monaco and France goalkeeper Jean-Luc Ettori's record of 602 appearances in the French top flight. If he plays in Bastia's final Ligue 1 game of the campaign next Saturday, at home to his first club Nantes, he will finish on 618 appearances altogether. But he also hopes to be named in Didier Deschamps' squad for the World Cup in Brazil, with the position of third-choice goalkeeper seemingly between him and Stéphane Ruffier of Saint-Etienne.
Landreau won the Ligue 1 title in 2001, two Coupes de France and two Trophées des Champions with Nantes before joining Paris Saint-Germain in 2006. He won the Coupe de la Ligue with PSG, and then went on to win a Ligue 1 and Coupe de France double with Lille in 2011. He joined Bastia midway through last season.
At international level, Landreau has been capped 11 times and was part of the squads that won the Confederations Cup in 2001 and 2003 and reached the World Cup final in 2006.