February 26, 2018 / 2:24 PM / 23 days ago

Scotland's Brown calls time on international career

(Reuters) - Scotland midfielder Scott Brown retired from international soccer on Monday for a second time and said a packed calendar prompted his decision to focus on his club career.

FILE PHOTO - Soccer Football - Europa League Round of 32 Second Leg - Zenit Saint Petersburg vs Celtic - Stadium St. Petersburg, Saint Petersburg, Russia - February 22, 2018 Celtic’s Scott Brown in action with Zenit St. Petersburg's Branislav Ivanovic REUTERS/Maxim Shemetov

The 32-year-old Celtic captain quit internationals in August, 2016 but reversed his decision two months later.

“Given the demands which are increasing all the time in football and at this stage of my career, I wasn’t able to give both my club and country my best and I needed to focus purely on Celtic at this time,” Brown said in a statement on Celtic’s website (www.celticfc.net).

“The football calendar is more and more demanding now, and in terms of looking after my own body and in interests of my family, I felt now is the right time to take this decision.”

Brown won 55 caps for Scotland and scored four goals. He also captained his country.

“Scott gave his all every time he represented his nation and his influence on the squad is immeasurable,” new Scotland manager Alex McLeish said.

“He has been a shining example for the younger players in the squad and an influential figure in the dressing-room.”

Reporting by Shrivathsa Sridhar in Bengaluru, editing by Ed Osmond

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