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Hughes makes Bentley plea
21 Jul 2007 - 14:16:31
Blackburn Rovers manager Mark Hughes has urged Steve McClaren not to hold David Bentley's decision to withdraw from the under-21 squad against him when it comes to England selection.
Bentley angered under-21 boss Stuart Pearce after pulling out of his squad on the eve of last month's European Championship through fatigue.
The Rovers midfielder remains in contention for a place in McClaren's full squad for next summer's senior European Championship and Hughes hopes the England coach will not hold Bentley's decision against him.
"I was disappointed with the reaction of the management of England in questioning his decision and whether or not it has placed a question mark over him at senior level," Hughes told the Daily Mirror.
"We told them if he had a break it would benefit not just ourselves, but the England group as well.
"If he becomes an option for senior selection, like he did last season, then I hope people don't hold it against him.
"He'll play as well as last year, if not even better, and he's already looking sharper."