Thursday Feb 10, 2022. 15:00
Chelsea winger Hakim Ziyech insists he will be solely focused on his club career going forward after deciding to quit international football.
The 28-year-old had a falling-out with Morocco head coach Vahid Halilhodzic last year and was subsequently omitted from his squad for the Africa Cup of Nations in Cameroon.
Halilhodzic had accused Ziyech of feigning injury and chose not to select him for any of the six World Cup qualifiers in 2021, with his last appearance coming against Burkina Faso on June 12.
After the Bosnian tactician indicated last week he had no intention of recalling the former Netherlands youth international for the two-legged World Cup play-off against DR Congo, Ziyech has opted to call time on his career with the Atlas Lions.
“I will not return to the national team, and this is my final decision,” he said. “I am focusing on what I am doing with my club.
“Everyone has seen what happened in the last period. I am sad but this is my final decision.
“The coach of the national team made his decision, and in any case I respect it. My focus now, as I said, is only on Chelsea.”
Ziyech, who scored 17 goals in 40 outings for the North Africans, is currently participating at the Club World Cup in the United Arab Emirates, where he helped the Blues reach the final.