Scott Arfield announces retirement from international football as Rangers midfielder posts Instagram message

The 33-year-old earned 19 caps for the Canadian national team

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Rangers midfielder Scott Arfield has announced his retirement from international football on social media.

The 33-year-old earned 19 caps and scored two goals for Canada, who are currently on the verge of qualifying for the World Cup for the first time since 1986.

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Arfield played for Scotland at Under-19s and Under-21s level before switching allegiance to Canada in February 2016, qualifying through his Toronto-born father.

Scott Arfield celebrates after leading Canada to a 2-0 win over the USA in Toronto in October 2019. Doubts remain over the Rangers midfielder's longer term international future.(Photo by Vaughn Ridley/Getty Images)

At the time, many people felt Scotland national team manager Gordon Strachan had made a mistake by not handing Arfield a senior call-up.

During his five-year stint with the Canucks, Arfield played against Scotland in a friendly at Easter Road in March 2017 and was later named in the squad for the 2017 CONCACAF Gold Cup, scoring his first goal against French Guiana during the tournament.

The following year, Arfield was handed the captains armband for their Nations League match against U.S Virgin Islands and played in the 2019 CONCACAF Gold Cup.

In October 2020, previous Rangers boss Steven Gerrard suggested that Arfield had retired from international duty but the player refuted the claim in an interview with Rangers TV, stating that his continued involvement with Canada would be up to Head Coach John Herdman.

He missed out on a place in the 23-man squad for last year’s CONCACAF Gold Cup and has now called time on his international duties.

Posting a message on his Instagram account, Arfield stated: “It’s with a heavy heart that the time has come to officially announce my retirement from the Canadian men’s national team.

Rangers midfielder Scott Arfield is relishing the prospect of landing a glamour tie in Monday's Europa League knockout round play-off draw. (Photo by Craig Williamson / SNS Group)

“I have loved every minute representing Canada. I am extremely grateful for the opportunities and experiences I have been given both on and off the pitch.”

Canada are at their all-time highest FIFA ranking of 40th and are set to play crucial World Cup qualifiers against Honduras, the USA and El Salvador later this month.

Meanwhile, Rangers midfielder Joe Aribo has helped Nigeria reach the knockout stages of the African Cup of Nations.

Aribo played the full 90 minutes of Saturday’s 3-1 victory over Sudan, with former Light Blues flop Umar Sadiq also making a brief appearance as a second-half substitute.