MELBOURNE (Reuters) - Veteran Australia midfielder Mark Bresciano has called time on his international career after celebrating the Socceroos' Asian Cup triumph on home soil last month.
The 35-year-old, who scored 13 goals in 84 'A' internationals, represented Australia in three consecutive World Cup finals campaigns in 2006, 2010 and last year in Brazil.
Classy playmaker Bresciano, a fixture in Italy's Serie A for a decade, made fewer starting appearances in the gold shirt of Australia in recent years but played important cameo roles to ensure the Socceroos kept their place at the World Cup table.
“It is with an element of sadness but a lot of pride that I have decided to retire from the Socceroos,” Bresciano said in a statement on Wednesday.
“Playing for my country in the sport I love has been an amazing experience and something I have cherished but never taken for granted.
“I have been fortunate enough to wear the Socceroo shirt at every major football tournament, meet some tremendous people, shared the highs and lows with some great players, and capped it all off by helping us win the 2015 Asian Cup.
“It has been an unforgettable journey with a lot of positive memories but I feel it is time to let this fantastic group of young players continue to take the Socceroos forward.”
The son of southern European parents, Melbourne-born Bresciano was an original member of the Socceroos 'golden generation', the core of players who helped end the team's 32-year wait for a second World Cup appearance after their 1974 debut.
His retirement leaves forward Tim Cahill, the country's most prolific goal-scorer, as the last active Socceroo to have played with the Australia team that made it to the knockout round at the 2006 World Cup in Germany.
(Reporting by Ian Ransom; Editing by Peter Rutherford)