Germany captain Philipp Lahm has announced his retirement from international football, following his team's triumph at the 2014 World Cup.
Despite being just 30 years of age, Lahm - who played a crucial part in Germany's first ever World Cup triumph since 1990 - feels that it is the right time to hang up his boots.
"This is the right time. I decided that the World Cup in Brazil would be my last tournament," the defender stressed.
The Bayern Munich star, who has been deployed as a holding midfielder by Pep Guardiola from last season, revealed that he had already broken the news of his retirement to Germany head coach Joachim Low.
"I told Jogi Löw on Monday already that I am retiring from international football. The decision developed during last season," the Guardian quoted the player as saying.
DFB (German football association) president Wolfgang Niersbach also confirmed the news of Lahm's international retirement.
"Philipp has called me this morning and informed me personally about this decision. In the conversation I very quickly realised that it was futile to want to talk him out of it. He was in his 10 years playing for the national team not only an outstanding player, but always an absolute role model. I thanked him for everything he has done for the DFB," Niersbach said.
Lahm, who went on to earn 113 caps for Germany following his debut on 18 February 2004 against Croatia, was appointed the captain for the 2010 World Cup, after Michael Ballack pulled out due to an injury.
Although he was initially named the stand-in skipper till Ballack came back, Lahm was appointed on a permanent basis, after the former Chelsea midfielder failed to make his way back into the national team.
Lahm expressed his delight at winning the 2014 World Cup, saying it was the crowning moment of his career.
"Maybe it's going to take a few days, maybe a few weeks or months or maybe it will take a few years for the real meaning of this title to sink in. This is a gift; I can hardly sum it up in words," Lahm told Germany's Stern magazine.
"If ever I am named in the same breathe as other great captains, then that will make me proud, but that's still a long way away."