Xavi Hernandez
Xavi Hernandez at a news conference at the Joan Gamper training camp near Barcelona on 5 August.Reuters

Spain midfielder Xavi Hernandez has announced his retirement from international football on Tuesday.

The 34-year-old has decided to hang up his boots with Spain but will continue to play club football for Barcelona.

"I have taken the decision to leave the selection," he stated. "I think my time has ended."

Xavi, who made his Spain debut in November 2000 against the Netherlands, went on to make 133 apperances for the national side, scoring 13 goals.

Alongside fellow Barcelona midfielder Andres Iniesta, Xavi was at the heart of Spain's tiki-taka style, which won them the 2010 World Cup in South Africa. The playmaker was also part of the La Roja side which triumphed in the European Championships in 2008 and 2012.

Xavi was named the Euro 2008 Player of the Tournament. In 2010, he also won the World Soccer Player of the Year award. The midfielder said he was grateful for the opportunity and would remain a fan of the Spanish national team.

"It has been a marvelous time, a fantastic time for me, and I am proud of being here so many years and for all the victories. My time is over. I wish [the rest of the team] the best. From now on I will be another fan of the national team."

Spain boss Vicente del Bosque hailed Xavi and thanked him for his contributions to the national team.

"We have lost a one-of-a-kind player," del Bosque stressed. "He has been the man who was key to our style of play that has brought us so much success. We will miss him both on and off the pitch."

Meanwhile, Xavi confessed that he had planned to quit the national team after defending the European title in 2012 but del Bosque convinced him to stay on till the Brazil World Cup.

"I was going to retire after Euro 2012 but head coach Vicente del Bosque persuaded me to stay on and go to Brazil which was of course a huge disappointment for everyone and myself individually. After Euro 2012, it was generally understood I was going to be leaving after Brazil 2014."

Xavi also confirmed that he would continue playing for club Barcelona, with two years remaining on his current contract.

The La Masia product admitted that he was close to leaving the club as well, after falling down the pecking order under coach Gerardo Martino last season. However, the arrival of former Barcelona player Luis Enrique to replace Martino this summer made him stay on.

"He has changed my mentality and convinced me to stay. Luis Enrique talked to me straight. He told me to start from scratch, like everyone else. I like hearing what he has to say. We've spoken three or four times and I get a good vibe from him. More than anything else, his personality is what convinced me," Marca quoted Xavi.