Campbell holds back on deciding England future

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The Independent Football

Sol Campbell says that he is weighing up his England future, given the major changes ongoing at international level.

The former Tottenham and Arsenal defender appears to be considering devoting all his attention to Portsmouth's bid for a place in Europe after making a dramatic and initially admirable international comeback this year only to share England's shame in the Euro 2008 defeats by Russia and Croatia.

With the Football Association seemingly close to naming the Italian coach Fabio Capello as a replacement for the sacked Steve McClaren, Campbell said: "Basically, I will just see who comes in before deciding what to do about England. It's just about seeing what happens. I don't want to go through that situation again where I was out of the squad for such a long time."

Campbell, who has 73 caps, was omitted along with his Portsmouth team-mate David James at the start of McClaren's reign which followed England's quarter-final exit under Sven Goran Eriksson in the 2006 World Cup.

Both were recalled after an injury crisis struck England's first-choice central defenders and James's form forced McClaren's hand. Although James, 37, has already pledged to soldier on until told otherwise, despite only playing in the second half of a friendly match against Germany, Campbell is less sure.

"Recently I've played four England games I never expected to play," he said. "I was in there because some of the guys were injured. So I just got on with it really.

"It is a shame it ended like it did because I've never been in that position of not qualifying before, but I wanted to play for England and I came in at the back end of the qualification campaign. Now I'll just wait before deciding what to do in the future."

Both Campbell and James would more than likely continue as international candidates if the Portsmouth manager, Harry Redknapp, was given the England job, however unlikely that prospect now appears.

Redknapp's feats with Portsmouth in the Premier League this season have won him new respect within the game and Campbell still feels that his club manager could do a good job.

He said: "I think Harry will be good, but it really depends on the FA and who they talk to. I'm not too bothered if it is a foreign manager. Of course, we all want an Englishman but it's down to the FA to do it right."