Andrea Pirlo to quit international football after 2014 World Cup

Italy's Andrea Pirlo

Italy midfielder Andrea Pirlo says he will quit international football after the 2014 World Cup in Brazil.

Pirlo, 33, helped the Azzurri win the 2006 World Cup and reach the Euro 2012 final where they were beaten by Spain.

"The young players need to be given their chance," said the Juventus playmaker, who has won 97 caps.

"I will continue at club level for as long as I still have the passion and feel important. Otherwise I would be the first person to retire."

Andrea Pirlo

Pirlo has been a key part of the Italian side since making his debut against Azerbaijan in 2002.

He was named in the 2006 FIFPro XI after his performances in the World Cup where he provided more assists than any other player.

The ex-AC Milan player also impressed at Euro 2012, when Italy unexpectedly reached the final before losing 4-0 against reigning world champions Spain.

He was widely praised for his outstanding performance and chipped penalty in Italy's quarter-final shoot-out win over England.

Pirlo spent 10 years at Milan, winning two Serie A titles, two Champions Leagues and the World Club Cup, before moving to Juventus in 2011.

He is aiming to help the reigning Serie A champions to their second successive title on Sunday. Juventus are 11 points clear of Napoli with four games remaining and need to avoid defeat by 17th-placed Palermo.

BBC Sport will be providing updates and reaction from Juventus v Palermo in a European live text commentary on Sunday.

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