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Last Updated: Sunday, 2 July 2006, 17:03 GMT 18:03 UK
Neville to stay on with England
By Phil McNulty
Chief football writer in Baden Baden

Gary Neville
Neville refuses to call it a day on his England career yet
Gary Neville insists he will continue his England career despite the crushing disappointment of losing to Portugal on penalties at the World Cup.

The 31-year-old Manchester United defender has suffered the same penalty fate four times in major tournaments.

"I've always said I'll never retire from international football. It's not Gary Neville's right," he said.

"While I'm still playing football for any club then I'm available to play for my country. That's the way it is."

And he is backing England to bounce back from another tournament where they have failed to live up to expectations.

He said: "England always go again. What else can we do? You can't give in and say this is it, we are going to stop playing football.

"This is a proud footballing nation. It has suffered more than this and I am sure it will suffer again, but we must move on, move forward."

There can't be excuses - this is my fifth tournament and we have gone out on penalties four times

Gary Neville
Neville added: "We could have won. There was not a negative thought in my head about losing until Cristiano Ronaldo scored the final penalty.

"We lost, we suffer, but we pick ourselves up. It is the English mentality - you fight back, you don't give anything away.

"You suffer after defeats like this, but even in victory when you are elated, you still have to move on and that's what we have to do."

And Neville still expects big things from the current crop of England players.

He said: "I still think there is a little bit left in the golden generation. I don't think this is the end of the golden generation.

"I just think this World Cup was a really big chance for us. It was on European soil and we cruised through to the quarter-final without even having to perform.

"This was the night when we were going to have to be measured, where we were going to have to deliver, and for one reason or another we didn't win the game."

Neville added: "People will suggest we are not good enough and you can't argue with that because we have gone out again.

"There can't be excuses. This is my fifth tournament and we have gone out on penalties four times.

"You can't have excuses every time. You can maybe say you were unlucky once, but you can't keep saying it and I'm certainly not going to say that after this."

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