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SOCIAL BOOKMARKS

Áine O'Gorman announces her retirement from international football after 100 Ireland caps

Centurian Áine O'Gorman has announced her retirement from international football.

The 29-year-old won her 100th Republic of Ireland cap in the June defeat to Norway in the World Cup qualifiers.

O'Gorman made her international debut aged just 16, and would go on to score on 13 occasions for Ireland.

"After 12 years of representing my country at senior level and 100 caps for the Republic of Ireland Women's National Team, it is with great sadness and joy that I'm retiring from international football," she wrote in an open letter.

"It has been an incredible journey with the team over the years and one which has been such a huge part of my life. Every time that I've pulled on the Ireland jersey, it has been a moment of incredible honour for both my family and I. But now, I feel it is time to step aside and let the next generation make their mark.

"Back in 2006, I could never have imagined that my international career would see me reach 100 caps when I made my debut at the Algarve Cup against Denmark. Despite only being 16 years of age, Head Coach Noel King believed in me and brought me into the senior squad. I will always be thankful to him for giving me the opportunity and platform to begin my international career.

"Of course, there will always be a tinge of sadness that we were never able to qualify for a major international tournament. We came close on a few occasions but it wasn't to be. I've no doubt that the work currently being done with the national team now will see them achieve that qualification in the future."

Sue Ronan and Áine O'Gorman, pictured in 2014.

She will continue playing in the Women's National League with Peamount United, while taking steps towards a UEFA B Licence and a coaching career.

Ireland head coach Colin Bell said: "Aine has had a fantastic international career and has had a profound impact on the growth of the sport in this country.

"For any player to get over 100 caps is a fantastic feat and she should be very proud of her achievements. Ever since I began my management of the team, Aine has been a fantastic person to work with.

"She has been a fantastic role model to the young players who've come into the squad over the past year or so, and I would like to thank for her professionalism in every camp. I really hope that Aine will stay in the game and contribute even further to women's football.

"She has fantastic experience and knowledge which would be invaluable to young players, and I really hope to see her look to pursue the coaching pathway."

Digital Desk