South African star Steven Pienaar has announced his retirement from international football – taking himself out of contention for the African Cup of Nations in January 2013.

According to reports in his homeland, Steven has told Bafana Bafana coach Gordon Igesund that he no longer wishes to be available for selection as he felt the rigours of international football would be too much of a strain as he looks to prolong his domestic football career.

Aged just 30 years old, it is an unexpected decision by the wide midfielder, but a massive boost for Evertonians who would have been dreading his bi-annual two month absence from the Toffees squad due to the tournament.

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