Who thought this moment would ever come? Legendary Egyptian international goalkeeper Essam El-Hadary has announced his retirement from international football, saying his goodbyes in a statement on his Facebook page today.

The 45 year-old made history at the World Cup this summer, becoming the oldest player to ever feature in the competition, in a game against Saudi Arabia where he saved a penalty.

"After 22 years, four months and 12 days, I saw it as the best moment to hang up my gloves. I am very proud to have played with the national team in 159 internationals, participating in unprecedented achievements”, he said.

In a long and illustrious career, El-Hadary won the African Cup four times, and was chosen as best goalkeeper of the competition three times; in 2006, 2008, and 2010.

El-Hadary currently represents Egyptian club Ismaily in club football. You can read his long and emotional goodbye letter here.

Main image from mykhel.com