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Page last updated at 12:00 GMT, Tuesday, 15 June 2010 13:00 UK

Homesickness not behind omission - Leighton Baines

Leighton Baines
Baines (right) struggled to contend with the Mexicans in May

Defender Leighton Baines has dismissed reports that homesickness was why he did not make England's World Cup squad.

The Everton star lost out to Stephen Warnock, despite playing in the warm-up match against Mexico at Wembley in May.

Baines feels he was misquoted after revealing he would miss his family when asked about travelling to South Africa.

He told the Toffees website: "I never mentioned the word homesick. I felt my comments were misconstrued and I came across as a bit of a moaner."

The 25-year-old had been hoping for the left-back slot behind Ashley Cole but Capello opted for Aston Villa's Warnock instead, a player who did not feature in the game against Mexico on 24 May or the friendly with Japan.

"It was a massive disappointment and something of a surprise even though, like most of the lads in the squad, I knew full well that I wasn't guaranteed a place," added Baines.

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"I was feeling low because I knew I hadn't played my best against Mexico and I spoke to a reporter I know about how the game had gone.

"At the end of the conversation I was asked if I was missing the family while we were away and I said I was but that it's all part and parcel of being a footballer.

"I'm not embarrassed to admit that being away from the family is difficult at times but I'm not the only player who feels that. It's natural when you've got a young family and you're away from home for long spells so I was shocked when I read some of the reports that later surfaced."

Before the squad was announced, Baines admitted that being away from home was something he had always struggled with.

But the Kirkby-born player insisted that Capello's decision to omit him from the 23-man squad was based purely on professional grounds.

"I was as desperate to make the plane as every other member of the squad and my family was 100% behind me, so I was bitterly disappointed when Mr Capello told me that I wouldn't be going," he added.

"It was a football reason though and had nothing to do with anything written in the newspapers. I respected his decision and wished him and the lads all the best for the tournament."



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see also
Rooney back in England training
15 Jun 10 |  World Cup 2010
Beckenbauer attacks England style
15 Jun 10 |  World Cup 2010
Walcott left out of England squad
01 Jun 10 |  World Cup 2010
England 3-1 Mexico
24 May 10 |  World Cup 2010
Japan 1-2 England
30 May 10 |  World Cup 2010
World Cup guide - England
10 May 10 |  World Cup 2010
England's World Cup qualifying highlights
03 Dec 09 |  World Cup 2010
World Cup venues
05 Dec 09 |  World Cup 2010


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