Norwich striker Mbokani quits international football

The forward has retired from the DR Congo national football team after he was denied leave in the wake of the terrorist attacks in Brussels

Norwich striker Mbokani quits international football
Mbokani will no longer represent the DR Congo | Photo: Anadolu Agency/Getty Images

Norwich City frontman Dieumerci Mbokani has retired from international football, as reported by French sports paper L'Équipe.

The 30-year-old had reportedly been left shaken after his first-hand experience of the recent terrorist atrocities in Brussels, and had requested some time off to recover during the international break.

However, it is thought that officials from the Democratic Republic of the Congo, for whom Mbokani has scored 16 goals in 31 games, were unwilling to grant the forward time off, causing him to quit the team.

Speaking on Top Congo FM, Mbokani claimed that he had problems "all the time" with the Congolese Football Federation (FECOFA), and had made the decision to quit after discussing the matter with family and friends.

Mbokani strike helps Norwich past Newcastle

Mbokani cited "unfair treatment" as the reason for his decision, who will now look to concentrate on helping his club side avoid relegation from the Premier League.

He scored a stunning goal in the Canaries' crucial 3-2 victory over relegation rivals Newcastle United at the weekend, cutting in from the left wing and firing in a powerful right-footed shot across the goalkeeper from just inside the area.

Mbokani celebrates his goal in Norwich's relegation shoot-out with Newcastle | Photo: Lyndsey Parnaby/Getty Images
Mbokani celebrates his goal in Norwich's relegation shoot-out with Newcastle | Photo: Lyndsey Parnaby/Getty

The result moved Norwich six points clear of the Magpies and four points clear of Sunderland in 18th, though both North East teams have a game in hand on Alex Neil's side, who sit just above the relegation zone.

More huge games coming up for Norwich

Norwich could take further steps towards top-flight survival in the next two weeks, starting with a trip to Crystal Palace this Saturday. Norwich would move level on points with Palace with a win, though Alan Pardew's men have a far superior goal difference and a game in hand.

Mbokani and the rest of the Norwich squad then play host to Sunderland the following week, in a game which seems the very definition of the phrase 'relegation six-pointer'.