Didier Drogba: Chelsea striker announces Ivory Coast retirement

Ivory Coast striker Didier Drogba
The World Cup finals in Brazil were Drogba's third for his country

Didier Drogba has announced his retirement from international football.

The Chelsea striker scored 65 goals in 104 appearances for Ivory Coast over a 12-year period. He played in three World Cups.

Drogba returned to Stamford Bridge last month, signing a one-year deal after leaving Turkish side Galatasaray.

Archive: Drogba scores at World Cup

The 36-year-old said: "I'm proud to have captained this team for eight years and to have contributed to putting my country on the world stage."

Drogba hopes his decision will help him make a big impact on his return to the Premier League after a two-year absence.

He has been backed by Chelsea team-mate John Terry to reproduce the form that saw him score 157 goals in 342 games during his first eight-year spell at Stamford Bridge.

Drogba added: "It's with much sadness that I've decided to retire from international football.

"I can't convey enough thanks to the fans for all the love and support during these years. All my goals, all my caps, all our victories are for you.

"I owe much gratitude to my team-mates, the players with whom I've shared all these emotions and I wish them all much success for the future."