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Former Man City striker to retire next week

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Former Bayern Munich and Manchester City striker Roque Santa Cruz, Paraguay's all-time leading scorer, has announced that the 2018 World Cup qualifiers against Peru and Bolivia in the next week would be his last appearances for the national football team.

The 35-year-old said on Tuesday, "With this call-up I am bringing to an end my time in the national team. It's a decision that's hard to take but had to be taken at some point...I think it's time to just dedicate myself to my club. I'm happy to retire at a time when I still feel good enough to play," added Santa Cruz, who currently plays for Olimpia club.

Paraguay are currently seventh in the South American zone standings with 15 points from 10 matches. The Francisco Arce-coached team will host Peru in Asuncion on Thursday before confronting Bolivia in La Paz next Tuesday.