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Goalkeeper retires from national football side

Marco Pascolo has decided to call it a day with the national team Keystone

Marco Pascolo, the goalkeeper of the Swiss national football team, says he will retire after Wednesday's match against Luxembourg. He is third player in two days to announce his departure, although the 35-year-old says it has nothing to do with differences with the coach.

Pascolo told the trainer two months ago he would be leaving the side after the game against Yugoslavia, which took place on Saturday. He will however make the trip to Luxembourg, but he will be firmly rooted to the substitutes’ bench.

Jörg Stiel, who plays for Borussia Mönchengladbach in Germany’s Bundesliga, will take over from the Zurich keeper.

Pascolo, who has represented his country 55 times, played for clubs both in Switzerland and abroad before ending up in Zurich. The player spent time at Neuchâtel Xamax, Servette, and Sion, as well as with Italian side Cagliari and English team Nottingham Forest.

The announcement comes just one day after two other veterans, Grasshoppers Zurich’s Stéphane Chapuisat and Liverpool’s Stéphane Henchoz, said they were pulling out of the national team.

Both men, who were left out of the starting side for last Saturday’s World Cup qualifier against Yugoslavia, said they were leaving because the coach refused to explain his decision to them. The players have said however they may reconsider their choice in the future.

Switzerland lost Saturday’s match against the Yugoslavs, 2-1, and with it their last chance to qualify for the World Cup in Japan and Korea next year. Luxembourg is also out of the qualifying race.

Swiss team for Wednesday’s match against Luxembourg: Jörg Stiel (captain), Bernd Haas, Murat Yakin, Patrick Müller, Yvan Quentin, Davide Sesa, Johann Vogel, Ciriaco Sforza, Alexandre Comisetti, Alex Frei, Kubilay Türkyilmaz.

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SWI - a branch of Swiss Broadcasting Corporation SRG SSR

SWI - a branch of Swiss Broadcasting Corporation SRG SSR