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Miroslav Klose: Germany decision final

Germany's all-time leading goal-scorer Miroslav Klose has told Bild his decision to retire from international football is final.

- German media praises Klose

Klose, 36, confirmed the news on Monday after an international career spanning 13 years, during which he made 137 appearances and scored 71 goals, including a record 16 at World Cup finals.

Germany coach Joachim Low praised Klose as "one of the greatest attackers to ever play the game," but -- although he was the only orthodox striker in his country's 23-man World Cup squad -- the player said he would not consider making a return under any circumstances.

"No chance, that's not me," he said. "When I make a decision, it is final, and the Bundestrainer [Low] also knows that."

Klose said he had discussed the matter with Low before arriving at his decision.

"I met Joachim Low twice during my holidays in Sardinia," he said. "We had very good talks but, as early as our first meeting, I told him that I was considering retirement.

"He told me to sleep on it, and so I did, and during our second meeting I told him: 'Jogi, that's it. I've made up my mind. I will retire.'"

Brazil marked Klose's fourth World Cup with Germany and he said that, ultimately, finally winning the trophy had played a key role in his decision.

"It's not like I feel I won't be able to do it anymore," he said, "but is there anything nicer than stepping down after winning the World Cup title?"

Klose is confident other players can fill the void left by his retirement, including Fiorentina striker Mario Gomez -- who missed the World Cup after struggling with injury -- and 22-year-old Hoffenheim forward Kevin Volland.

"Mario Gomez will return," he said. "That's what I wish for him. He had a horror year. In normal circumstances, he'd be world champion now.

"I liked what I saw of Kevin Volland, even if he's not a classic striker who plays in the box, and there are a few good attackers in the under-20 side [which recently won the European Championship]," Klose said.

Meanwhile, former Germany captain Philipp Lahm has told Munchener Merkur that he felt the time was right to retire from international football.

"I had 10 wonderful years with the national team, and have achieved all my goals there," he said. "I'll turn 31 in September, and my son turns 2 on Friday.

"It was just the perfect time to close this chapter -- and it's not like I don't have any goals anymore. I have a contract at FC Bayern. It runs for another four years. FC Bayern -- that's my club, my heart and I want to win many, many titles with this club."


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