Malafeev stalls international career for family
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Russian goalkeeper Vyacheslav Malafeev on Monday announced he was temporarily stepping down from international duty to spend more time with his two children.

The Zenit St Petersburg shot-stopper informed the Russian Football Union (RFU) deputy president Nikita Simonyan and Russia's national manager Fabio Capello, the official RFU site reported.

"It was a difficult decision to stop my international career from both a professional and human point of view," the RFU site quoted Malafeev as saying.

"But it's the only correct decision for my family," added the 33-year-old who is raising his children alone after his wife Marina has died in a car crash in March 2011.

Malafeev has played 28 matches for Russia after making his international debut in a 1-0 victory in the Euro-2004 qualifying play-off match against Wales in 2003.