Ryan Bertrand concerned by physical Senegal

 

Great Britain defender Ryan Bertrand admitted he feared for his safety at times during last night's 1-1 draw with Senegal.

Whilst coach Stuart Pearce opted not to criticise the Africans' robust approach, his players were less than impressed.

Skipper Ryan Giggs felt some of the challenges were "naughty", with GB particularly aggrieved at a wild Saliou Ciss tackle on Craig Bellamy that went completely unpunished.

Bertrand suffered as well, getting caught on the arm.

And the Chelsea man admitted it was not a pleasant experience at times.

"There were some horrific challenges," he said.

"I was fearing for my safety at some points.

"I have cuts on my shoulder, I am sure Craig is down and if Neil Taylor hadn't jumped out of the way of one in the first-half, he could have been really hurt.

"It was pretty physical to say the least."

As Senegal also grabbed a late equaliser to deny GB victory, Bertrand could have been forgiven for being sour at the entire evening.

Nothing could be further from the truth.

In fact, it just extended an incredible few months for the 23-year-old, who was catapulted into Chelsea's Champions League starting line-up by Roberto Di Matteo in May.

"It is crazy how football can turn round," he said.

"I was fully confident that somewhere, at some stage, I would get my break.

"Even when I was in and out of the squad my attitude in training never dropped and thankfully Di Matteo put his faith in me."

Having waited so long for his Blues breakthrough, to now be called for Olympic duty might have been viewed as a complication for Bertrand.

After all, whilst he is scrapping away on behalf of a made-up team, albeit one watched by a crowd in excess of 72,000 at Old Trafford last night, his Chelsea team-mates are on their pre-season tour of the United States, where Di Matteo is formulating plans for the new campaign.

Bertrand does not regret a thing though.

Indeed, with England boss Roy Hodgson due to be at Sunday's Wembley encounter with United Arab Emirates, the Southwark-born player has yet another potential manager to impress.

"It would have been crazy for anyone to turn down the chance of being involved in the Olympics with Great Britain," he said.

"This was a massive opportunity and Chelsea have shown a bit of consistency by keeping Di Matteo so it is not back to square one in that sense.

"My ambition for this season is to try and get a few games for Chelsea.

"But GB is another step in my international career and eventually, I hope to get an opportunity with England, so having Roy Hodgson at the game on Sunday cannot be a bad thing."

PA

Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Daily Quiz
SPONSORED FEATURES
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Day In a Page

Refugee crisis: David Cameron lowered the flag for the dead king of Saudi Arabia - will he do the same honour for little Aylan Kurdi?

Cameron lowered the flag for the dead king of Saudi Arabia...

But will he do the same honour for little Aylan Kurdi, asks Robert Fisk
Our leaders lack courage in this refugee crisis. We are shamed by our European neighbours

Our leaders lack courage in this refugee crisis. We are shamed by our European neighbours

Humanity must be at the heart of politics, says Jeremy Corbyn
Joe Biden's 'tease tour': Could the US Vice-President be testing the water for a presidential run?

Joe Biden's 'tease tour'

Could the US Vice-President be testing the water for a presidential run?
Britain's 24-hour culture: With the 'leisured society' a distant dream we're working longer and less regular hours than ever

Britain's 24-hour culture

With the 'leisured society' a distant dream we're working longer and less regular hours than ever
Diplomacy board game: Treachery is the way to win - which makes it just like the real thing

The addictive nature of Diplomacy

Bullying, betrayal, aggression – it may be just a board game, but the family that plays Diplomacy may never look at each other in the same way again
Lady Chatterley's Lover: Racy underwear for fans of DH Lawrence's equally racy tome

Fashion: Ooh, Lady Chatterley!

Take inspiration from DH Lawrence's racy tome with equally racy underwear
8 best children's clocks

Tick-tock: 8 best children's clocks

Whether you’re teaching them to tell the time or putting the finishing touches to a nursery, there’s a ticker for that
Charlie Austin: Queens Park Rangers striker says ‘If the move is not right, I’m not going’

Charlie Austin: ‘If the move is not right, I’m not going’

After hitting 18 goals in the Premier League last season, the QPR striker was the great non-deal of transfer deadline day. But he says he'd preferred another shot at promotion
Isis profits from destruction of antiquities by selling relics to dealers - and then blowing up the buildings they come from to conceal the evidence of looting

How Isis profits from destruction of antiquities

Robert Fisk on the terrorist group's manipulation of the market to increase the price of artefacts
Labour leadership: Andy Burnham urges Jeremy Corbyn voters to think again in last-minute plea

'If we lose touch we’ll end up with two decades of the Tories'

In an exclusive interview, Andy Burnham urges Jeremy Corbyn voters to think again in last-minute plea
Tunisia fears its Arab Spring could be reversed as the new regime becomes as intolerant of dissent as its predecessor

The Arab Spring reversed

Tunisian protesters fear that a new law will whitewash corrupt businessmen and officials, but they are finding that the new regime is becoming as intolerant of dissent as its predecessor
King Arthur: Legendary figure was real and lived most of his life in Strathclyde, academic claims

Academic claims King Arthur was real - and reveals where he lived

Dr Andrew Breeze says the legendary figure did exist – but was a general, not a king
Who is Oliver Bonas and how has he captured middle-class hearts?

Who is Oliver Bonas?

It's the first high-street store to pay its staff the living wage, and it saw out the recession in style
Earth has 'lost more than half its trees' since humans first started cutting them down

Axe-wielding Man fells half the world’s trees – leaving us just 422 each

However, the number of trees may be eight times higher than previously thought
60 years of Scalextric: Model cars are now stuffed with as much tech as real ones

60 years of Scalextric

Model cars are now stuffed with as much tech as real ones