Arda Turan quits international football after

Barcelona player Arda Turan has announced his retirement from the Turkish national team after being kicked out of the country’s training camp following an altercation with a journalist.

“I’ve made mistakes while wearing the national team shirt. I’m bringing my career with the national team to an end,” Arda Turan said in a press conference shown on Turkish channel NTV on Tuesday.

The Barça player has been expelled from the camp after clashing with a journalist on a flight back from the goalless draw with Macedonia on Monday.

Turkey coach Fatih Terim had taken that decision after the incident with Milliyet newspaper journalist Bilal Mese on a flight towards Italy, with Turkey then heading to Slovenia to prepare for Sunday’s World Cup qualifier against Kosovo.

According to newspaper Hürriyet, Turan accused Mese of writing lies about him and other players and, as well as verbally abusing him, grabbed him around the neck.

“What kind of a country is this? They allow you onto this plane. F*** those who allowed you onto this plane,” Hürriyet say the Barça player shouted.

“Tell me Bilal Meşe, were you there? Were you with us when you wrote about the bonuses issue? Who did I ask for money from? Who did ask I for bonuses from? Talk. Come on. Who made you write those reports?

“Your boss is [TFF President Yıldırım] Demirören. You are from the newspaper of the TFF president! Isn’t your boss the TFF president?”

After the reports emerged Turan posted on Instagram, saying that he can accept criticism of his football but he will not allow people to insult his and his family’s honour.

“You can’t talk about people’s character and family values,” he wrote. “Someone will remember this. I thanked some journalists who criticised my football… That is their job and it’s normal. But you can’t attack my family and my values, I will not allow this for as long as I can.”

Turan has formed part of the Turkey side since 2006 and had captained his country on a number of occasions. He was closing in on 100 caps and is one of the most admired players in the country. 

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