Australia legend Tim Cahill retires from international football
Tim Cahill has called time on his illustrious Socceroos career.
Australia's leading international goal scorer confirmed he has retired from international football after scoring 50 goals in 107 caps.
His cameo off the bench against Peru last month at the World Cup in Russia marked his fourth appearance at the global showpiece tournament -- a feat unlikely to be matched again in Australia.
The 38-year-old will go down as perhaps the greatest Socceroo of all time, having repeatedly bailed out the national team with stunning goals at vitally important moments.
"Today's the day that I'm officially hanging up my boots on my international career with the Socceroos," Cahill tweeted Tuesday.
"No words can describe what it has meant to represent my country.
"Massive thank you to everyone for the support throughout all my years wearing the Australian badge."
Cahill wasn't the most individually talented player to pull on the green and gold jersey, but he was the most important.
Teammates speak in awe of Cahill's ultra-professional attitude and dressing-room influence, and he will leave behind a big hole as new coach Graham Arnold takes up the reins and moves the team forward into a new era without their legendary talisman.
Many of Cahill's goals came at moments when Australia needed them the most.
His double against Japan at Kaiserslautern in 2006 made him the first Australian player to score at the World Cup, transforming him into a national icon in a flash.
He also scored at the 2010 and 2014 World Cups -- producing arguably the goal of the tournament at the latter with his rasping volley against the Netherlands to pull them level at 1-1.
Cahill backed that effort up again the following year at the Asian Cup, with both goals in Australia's 2-0 quarterfinal win over China in Brisbane -- the first a spectacular overhead bicycle kick, the second a trademark header.
And while his influence waned over the ensuing years, he produced the goods again as the Socceroos battled to qualify for Russia.
With Australia 1-0 down in their playoff against Syria, Cahill struck twice -- once in regulation time, once in extra time -- to put them on course for the two-legged battle against Honduras from which they emerged victorious.
Cahill is still yet to confirm whether he will continue playing at club level, having spent time at Melbourne City and English second-tier outfit Millwall in the lead-up to the World Cup.