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France Goalie Barthez Retires from Soccer

Goalkeeper Fabien Barthez, announced his retirement from the game on Thursday, three months after helping France reach its second World Cup final. "I am starting a new life," Barthez said. "I will continue to enjoy myself ... but without soccer." While many goalkeepers carry on at the top level well into their late thirties, Barthez, 35, had said he would retire from the game if could not find a new club by Aug. 31. His contract with Olympique Marseille was up at the end of last season. The flamboyant goalkeeper repeatedly said that Toulouse, his hometown club, was his first choice "The only clubs where I wanted to go were not very pleased to see me," Barthez told French television. "[Toulouse] would have been perfect for me." Barthez won the World Cup with France in 1998 and the European Championship in 2000; he won the European Champions League in 1993 with Marseille, the French Ligue 1 title with Monaco in 1997 and 2000, and the English Premiership with Manchester United in 2001 and 2003. He is reportedly mulling over an offer to become a TV commentator in Francefor rugby.

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