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Monday, June 1, 1998 Published at 11:15 GMT 12:15 UK


Sport: Football

Gazza axed and flies home

Gascoigne and Glenn Hoddle go their separate ways

Paul Gascoigne has returned to the home of his estranged wife Sheryl after being dropped from England's World Cup squad.


BBC football correspondent Mike Ingham: "An incredibly brave decision"
He reportedly hurled abuse at England manager Glenn Hoddle before storming out of the team camp at La Manga in Spain, leaving his luggage behind.

There have also been reports that Gascoigne missed a bus to an airport and asked for a beer during a training break.

After his row with Hoddle, Gascoigne joined the five other dropped players on a specially charted private jet taking them back to the UK before they could be approached by the media.

Hoddle also dropped Nicky Butt, Andy Hinchliffe, goalkeeper Ian Walker, Philip Neville and Dion Dublin from his final 22.

Gazza 'missed bus'


[ image: Heyhoe-Flint: Gazza
Heyhoe-Flint: Gazza "Asked for beer"
Former England women's cricket captain Rachel Heyhoe-Flint, working at the La Manga resort, told BBC Radio Five Live that Gascoigne missed the bus taking the England team to the airport prior for the friendly against Morocco in the King Hassan II International tournament.

She suggested that the Middlesbrough player had not shown the discipline expected by Hoddle.


Rachel Heyhoe-Flint says there were doubts in the England camp
"(The squad) were playing golf one afternoon and Gazza is sitting by the hospitality and I hear him saying to some of the back up team `can I have a beer?' I'm thinking, this is silly.

"If people are half-thinking, do we put Gazza in or don't we?, and there are various doubts on his character and personality, then regardless of what he can do on the pitch, it's probably why Glenn Hoddle has made the decision he has.

"If you think you are close to being selected then you really should do everything you can, to do the right things so you are seen to be part of the team."

'Worst thing that has happened'


[ image: Sheryl Gascoigne: Seeking divorce]
Sheryl Gascoigne: Seeking divorce
Arriving at the Hertfordshire home of his wife Gascoigne, still wearing training kit and trainers warned waiting reporters: "Don't try and knock at the door or ring the bell."

But he earlier told The Sun newspaper: "I can't believe this has happened. This is the worst thing that's ever happened to me."

Hoddle was due to reveal his 22 for the finals in France on Monday but brought the announcement forward.

The England star will be devastated by the decision after playing in the last three warm-up games against Saudi Arabia, Morocco and Belgium.

It almost certainly signals the end of the international career of one of the most controversial figures in football.

Expected to be midfield hub


FA Director of Public Affairs David Davies: "I feel personally sorry for Gazza and the other boys"
Gascoigne was widely expected to be at the hub of England's midfield as Hoddle begins his bid to win the World Cup for England for the first time since Sir Alf Ramsey in 1966.

But it is thought that Hoddle was unwilling to risk Gascoigne's fitness.

The Middlesbrough star, bought for £3m from Rangers in March, was back in the headlines earlier this month after a night out in which he was pictured emerging from a club and eating a kebab in the early hours.

Hoddle spoke of his disappointment at the latest episode in the controversial off the pitch lifestyle of the mercurial player.

Gascoigne appeared to heed the warning and, although he was not influential in the three warm-up games, it began to look as though he was regaining his fitness.

England's World Cup squad

Seaman, Flowers, Martyn, Campbell, Adams, Keown, R Ferdinand, Southgate, G Neville, Anderton, Beckham, Le Saux, Lee, McManaman, Ince, Batty, Merson, Scholes, L Ferdinand, Shearer, Sheringham, Owen.



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