Southend United’s Jason Demetriou has announced his retirement from international football with Cyprus.
The 32-year-old Blues defender has represented his country on 51 occasions – 14 of which have come during his time at Roots Hall Stadium.
The player – who formerly represented Leyton Orient and Walsall – Was clearly grateful for the opportunity but insisted the time was right to concentrate on his domestic career.
“It was a tough decision because I always loved going away,” said Demetriou. “With the situation with my knee hopefully I can prolong my career at club level by doing this.
“It’s a hard decision but I think it’s one that’s right for me, my family and the club as well,” the Newham-born player told www.southendunited.co.uk.
“If someone said to me at the start I’d be playing against some of the players I faced I wouldn’t have believed it. We played Bale, Ronaldo, Hazard, some of the best players.
“I was really lucky with some of the draws we got. We were always competitive, and it was never embarrassing. It was a dream come true to play against players of that stature.”
Demetriou added: “Towards the end, I was captain a few times too which was a huge honour. Whoever has the most caps in the team gets to be the captain and in the last campaign, I got to captain some good games.
“I feel privileged to have done it and to have had those kind of opportunities to have done that in my career.”
Meanwhile, Southend have conferred that on-loan winger, Jordan Green, has returned to his parent club, Barnsley, after sustaining an ankle injury during the Blues 2-1 Sky Bet League Two defeat at teh hands of Morecambe a fortnight ago.