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Last Updated: Wednesday, 15 August 2007, 08:14 GMT 09:14 UK
McClaren makes plea to Carragher
Jamie Carragher
Carragher has won 34 England caps
England coach Steve McClaren has made a personal plea to try to persuade Liverpool defender Jamie Carragher not to retire from international football.

McClaren visited Liverpool's training ground on Monday to speak to Carragher, 29, who has said he does not want to be a bit-part player for England.

Liverpool boss Rafael Benitez said: "I was aware they had spoken but I am not aware of the outcome.

"It's something for the player to decide and you respect his decision."

Carragher was omitted from England's last game, a Euro 2008 qualifier in Estonia, and expressed his frustration at his place in the national team's pecking order.


But McClaren is keen to keep Carragher involved, especially as he faces a shortage of defenders for the approaching friendly against Germany.

John Terry, Ledley King and Jonathan Woodgate are all expected to miss the encounter at Wembley.

Benitez added: "In such situations you always have to support your player and respect his decision.

"He is a great player and has never let his country down.

"But if this means I can use him more for Liverpool, then I am obviously pleased."

Before his visit to Liverpool's training ground, McClaren had said: "I can totally understand his thought process, I've every sympathy with players who want to play and feel they should.

"In a way, he has been quite unfortunate. There are players in every squad who can be effective in many positions, maybe sometimes to their detriment."

If Carragher opts to retire from international football, McClaren said he might turn to Portsmouth defender Sol Campbell.

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