Time’s running out

The England selection debate is a heated one yet again but it seems Curtis Davies is one of those players facing a perhaps undeserved snub.

The build-up to any World Cup is dominated by who should or should not be in each squad and Brazil 2014 is no different.

For every player who gets the call he has been desperately waiting for, there will be others who miss out and have to settle for watching the action on television.

The England selection debate is a heated one yet again but it seems Curtis Davies is one of those players facing a perhaps undeserved snub.

The Hull defender missed out on the extended 30-man squad for England’s recent friendly against Denmark despite garnering rave reviews for his efforts in lifting the pre-season relegation favourites to a comfortable mid-table position in the English Premier League, as well as the semifinals of the FA Cup.

The centre-half and team-mate Tom Huddlestone have each been championed as potential England call-ups during the season, but national boss Roy Hodgson has remained unmoved.

Hull manager Steve Bruce expressed his surprise that Cardiff’s Steven Caulker had been preferred to Davies this time, but has told his charges not to give up hope.

“In my experience there’s always one that comes from nowhere and goes to the World Cup and it could be one of ours,” he said.

“For Curtis and Tom to be even linked with it is good for them and they’ve got to stick with it and keep performing, then who knows?

“You’ve just got to keep at it but it’s all about one person and that’s Roy Hodgson.

“Management’s all about opinions. In my opinion, Curtis would be in there above Caulker but I’ve worked with Curtis for the last six months, so I know what he brings to the table.

“Consistency-wise he’s arguably been our best player, week in and week out. He can only keep doing that. There might be more twists and turns.

“They’ve just got to stick at it and keep knocking on the door.”

While Huddlestone was capped four times by England during his time at Tottenham, the closest Davies came was an appearance on the bench under Fabio Capello.

At almost 29, Davies is aware that time would appear to be running out on his international career. Reflecting on missing out on the England squad for the Denmark game, he said: “I feel disappointed because I knew the manager was going to name a bigger squad.

“I think this is the nail in the coffin of my chances of going to Brazil.

“You never know until the last minute but, for me, anyone who was going to be in consideration would have been included in this 30-man squad.

“I thought I might have been picked but football is about opinions and obviously the manager’s opinion on my style is that he doesn’t like it enough to put me in the squad at the moment.”

It is difficult to see what more Davies could have done to persuade Hodgson to give him a chance.

While Caulker has been part of a Cardiff defence which has conceded the second highest number of goals in the EPL, Davies has been a key figure for Hull during an impressive first campaign back in the top flight since promotion.

“I think, in terms of consistency, this is the best form I have been in,” he added.

“I don’t think I’ve really had a blip this season and I just want to keep that going.

“When you’re doing well and things are going well at your club then you don’t get tired and it makes a massive difference.”

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