‘I have never felt this disrespected and hurt in my dignity before’ - Real Madrid's Ricardo Carvalho retires from international football

The veteran centre-back has decided to stand down from Portugal duty as he claims he was treated in a disrespectful way by the national team
Real Madrid defender Ricardo Carvalho has issued a statement to announce his retirement from international football.

The 33-year-old stormed out of Portugal's training camp in Obidos earlier on Wednesday, with reports suggesting the defender made such a decision after learning he would not start in Friday's Euro 2012 qualifier against Cyprus.

Carvalho did not fly with the rest of the squad to Nicosia and he has now quit the national side as he believes he deserved a better treatment.

"I feel in great shape, both physically and mentally, like my performances for the club and the national team have shown. If they make me feel like a burden and will not tell me, the only possibility is to leave," the statement reads.

"I have never felt this disrespected and hurt in my dignity before. Between my peers, I am just one more athlete. However, I, too, deserve consideration and respect.

"I did not plan to end my international career this way but I do it convict that I always honoured my country."

The Real Madrid defender made his Portugal debut in 2003 against Albania and earned 75 caps, scoring four goals.

He was part of the Portugal team who finished runners-up at Euro 2004, having been nominated for the event's Uefa Euro Team of the Tournament.

Carvalho, who also took part in the 2006 and 2010 World Cups as well as Euro 2008, was last seen playing for his country in the 5-0 thrashing of Luxembourg earlier in the month.