Karim Benzema was sent home on the eve of the tournament after picking up an injury, but there was some speculation that he would have been able to participate in the final after taking part in a Real Madrid friendly.
He apparently turned down the chance to return to Qatar as a result of a dispute with manager Didier Deschamps, and he has now confirmed his decision to end his international career on social media.
Over 24 hours have passed since France’s shocking loss to Argentina, which prevented Deschamps’ team from clinching back-to-back World Cup victories.
Benzema declined Emmanuel Macron’s invitation to fly on his private jet to Qatar for Sunday’s championship match.
That came after his “I’m not interested” message before the final, in which he made it clear he would turn down any call-up.
To wish his teammates well, he did post the message, “It’s time… All together. Vamonos. Come on Les Bleus.”
Deschamps intends to address his future with the French Football Federation in the new year, but Benzema has chosen to leave the national team rather than wait to see how those negotiations turn out.
Benzema ends his time with France with 37 goals in 97 appearances, but his time with the squad hasn’t exactly been easy since his debut 15 years ago.
When Benzema made his debut for France against Austria in March 2007, he scored while playing as a substitute.
He was chosen for France’s Euro 2008 team; however, after the team was eliminated early, he faced criticism for his efforts.
Benzema was left out of France’s squad for the 2010 World Cup despite participating in the qualification campaign on a regular basis.
Although coach Raymond Domenech said it was because of his club form with Real Madrid rather than his alleged involvement in a sex scandal at the time.
Benzema would have played in Euro 2012 and the 2014 World Cup if he hadn’t been involved in a sex tape blackmail plot against France’s Mathieu Valbuena.
Which resulted in a five-year ban from international competition, including France’s successful World Cup campaign in 2018.
He was included in the France team again for Euro 2020, and he ended up being the third-highest scorer with four goals.
Benzema took home the first title of his stint with the national team after making an impact in the UEFA Nations League finals.
Before his injury got in the way, Benzema had anticipated being a force in the French attack at the World Cup after a stellar year in which he won the Champions League and the Ballon d’Or.