Michael Carrick has been named in the England squad for the game against Italy next week. Having told the FA he wasn’t interested in being considered for the squad if he wasn’t going to play, Carrick was left out of Roy Hodgson’s team that went to Euro 2012.

Despite statistically being the most effective English midfielder in the Premier League last season, along with Paul Scholes, Hodgson rated Scott Parker, Frank Lampard, Steven Gerrard and Gareth Barry more highly, meaning that Carrick wasn’t asked to come out of ‘retirement’ and Jordan Henderson went in his place.

A couple of months ago, Carrick confirmed that he hadn’t closed the door on his England career though, and would be happy to represent his country again.

“Yeah, I would consider it definitely,” he said. “It wasn’t a case of me turning my back on my country or quitting. I didn’t kick the door down and say “you’ve got to play me or I’ll leave”. It was more a case of I wasn’t going to play, then I’d rather not go with England. ‘If you’re not playing at my age, especially under Capello, then it’s not worth it. That was my decision. Some people have said it was more “play me or I’ll quit” but it was nothing at all like that. I haven’t said this before but during the last World Cup I never featured and I was never really close to playing. At my age, it was a hard time. I just didn’t feel part of it. So I thought if it was going to be the same scenario this time, I’d rather let someone else go in my place. It was a huge decision but in many ways the decision was made for me. It’s a game of opinions and Capello wanted to play a certain way. It was just a case of “fair enough, if that’s your opinion, then I’d rather not go”.”




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