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Pearce critique leaves Jones cold

13 Sep 2013 09:46:56

Pearce critique leaves Jones cold

Stuart Pearce's stinging criticism of Phil Jones has not put the Manchester United man off playing for England.

Pearce this week singled out Jones and Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain as two players who missed the European Under-21 Championships because he believed they felt dropping back down from the senior squad was beneath them.

Jones has insisted Pearce's claims are not true but it underlines the problems that can arise when players put themselves up for national selection.

But it has not dampened his enthusiasm for England duty.

Speaking on a visit to his old school, Balshaw's CE High School in Leyland, to deliver football equipment he helped pay for as part of a combined initiative involving the Premier League, PFA and Manchester United, Jones said: "It is an honour to represent your country at any level and I will continue to enjoy that experience when it happens.

"I have represented the Under-19s, the Under-21s and the seniors. I said from the first day I pulled on an England shirt, it sent shivers down my spine.

"How he can come out and say I didn't want to play for the Under-21s is beyond me.

"It wasn't nice to read what he said and I am sure Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain is thinking the same thing."

Having missed the first three months of last season, and another six-week period between the middle of February and the beginning of April with a knee injury, then-United boss Sir Alex Ferguson wanted to protect Jones.

In addition, England boss Roy Hodgson would not countenance any player chosen for the post-season trip to Brazil to also be selected for Under-21 duty.


PA

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