Mondragon thanks Pekerman for convincing him to keep playing

The veteran Colombia goalkeeper became the oldest footballer to feature in a World Cup on Tuesday, and he has praised his national team boss for persuading him not to retire

Colombia's Faryd Mondragon has paid tribute to national team coach Jose Pekerman for convincing him to not retire from international football.

The 43-year-old made history by becoming the oldest man to ever play at a World Cup when he came on as a late substitute in Colombia’s 4-1 win over Japan on Tuesday.

Keep up with all the latest news from Brazil and get involved in the debate on Twitter with our new World Cup Social Hub
The cameo appearance resulted in the veteran goalkeeper beating Roger Milla’s record, set at the World Cup in 1994 when the Cameroon player featured for his side at the age of 42 years, one month and eight days.

Mondragon, who is due to retire after the tournament in Brazil, praised Pekerman for encouraging him to keep playing international football and helping him to write his name into the history books.

"Jose Pekerman convinced me to continue playing. I will never forget that,” he said.

"If it wasn't for him, I would have retired two years ago.

"I feel privileged to be here, it was my best birthday ever."

Mondragon’s 85th-minute appearance against Japan also broke the record for most time elapsed between World Cup finals appearances, with the 43-year-old last featuring for Colombia 16 years ago at France '98.

The record was previously held by Switzerland's Alfred Bickel, who went 12 years between playing in the tournament when he featured in France 1938 before then appearing in 1950 in Brazil.