Phil Jagielka has expressed his displeasure with calls for the return of Chelsea FC defender John Terry to the England national team.
John Terry and Gary Cahill formed a wonderful partnership at the back for Chelsea this season as the London club pushed for the league title. His consistent performances have led to calls, in press and among experts, for his return to the national side.
The 33-year-old center back decided to retire from International football after allegations of racism were brought against him back in 2012. The Chelsea skipper allegedly racially abused Anton Ferdinand during a league game and although he was cleared of these charges by the Westminister Magistrates’ court, FA decided to press charges against him. Terry said the FA’s decision to pursue charges against him meant his position with England had become “untenable” and he retired from the international stage.
England manager Roy Hodgson has earlier ruled out the possibility of Terry’s return to the side ahead of the World Cup, but a lot of people believed that the Three Lions should have looked at the option of using the Cahill-Terry partnership in Brazil. These sentiments have of course not gone down well with Everton defender Phil Jagielka, who will be Cahill’s partner in the World Cup. He feels that England’s defence performed well during the qualifiers and is confident of repeating such feat in the World Cup.
“It’s difficult. I can’t say I particularly like to hear it.
“I understand why I do (hear it). Obviously Gaz and JT play together at Chelsea, they play in the Champions League and were contenders to win the Premier League.
“I was asked the other day, that while our attack looks good would our defence be okay? I felt like laughing.
“Our defensive record in the qualifiers was pretty decent, but I can’t stop what people are going to ask. I stop, smile and get on with it.” – The England defender said in an interview.
The 31-year-old has largely been ignored by the national team during the early part of his career, despite consistent performances. But the departure of old guards like Rio Ferdinand and John Terry has provided him with opportunity to shine at this stage; Jagielka is keen to make the most of this opportunity.
“My career path has been slightly different to some of the lads who have been involved with England since they were teenagers.
“If I had got a chance I would have tried to seize the moment at the Euros, but it wasn’t to be.
“Hopefully I will this time. I know at 31 I won’t be around forever and this could be my one tournament.” – Jagielka added.
Jagielka also revealed that he shares a good relationship with Cahill based on their Sheffield United connection.
“He is a Sheffield lad and I played for them so there is plenty to talk about.
“Our relationship is a good one. We spend a lot of time together and we laugh and joke.
“We do not have a tremendous amount of caps but they have mostly been with each other.” – He said.