BRUSSELS (Reuters) - Veteran Belgium defender Daniel van Buyten announced his retirement on Thursday, ending speculation he was to join champions Anderlecht for the season.
The 36-year-old, one of the outstanding performers at the World Cup in Brazil, came to the end of his contract with Bayern Munich in June and although he held talks with the Belgian champions on Monday, has decided to call it a day.
“I have tried over the last weeks but my body tells me no more,” he said in open letter to the Brussels newspaper La Derniere Heure.
“If I’m going to do something it must be 100 percent.”
Van Buyten won the last of 84 caps in the quarter-final defeat by Argentina in Brasilia on July 5.
He was part of four Bundesliga-winning sides during his time with Bayern and on the bench for both the 2012 and 2013 Champions League finals. He came on for extra time against Chelsea in the losing team in Munich two years ago.
Van Buyten played at Standard Liege, Olympique de Marseille and Hamburg and had a brief loan spell at Manchester City 10 years ago.
(Reporting by Mark Gleeson; Editing by Ed Osmond; email@example.com; +27 82 8257807; Reuters Messaging: firstname.lastname@example.org)