Liverpool defender Jamie Carragher has revealed he turned down an invitation from England coach Fabio Capello to come out of international retirement.
Carragher, 31, quit international football in summer 2007 after winning 34 caps during eight years in which he was regularly involved in England squads but struggled for starting opportunities.
But the Reds defender has revealed he decided against taking up an invitation from Capello to meet with his assistant Franco Baldini last year despite encouragement from club-mate Steven Gerrard.
"I was supposed to meet Franco Baldini for a chat a year ago and at the last minute I pulled out," he told The Times.
"It was more out of courtesy that I was going to do it. Stevie had mentioned it to me a couple of times, so I agreed to the meeting, but at the last minute I just didn't want to do it.
"I don't think my situation would change if I got back in the squad. John Terry and Rio Ferdinand are first choice and they are two of the best central defenders in the world.
"Maybe I'd have won ten more caps over the last couple of years because Rio and John have missed a few games, but you couldn't ask for a better centre-half pairing than those two going into the World Cup."