22 Aug 2011

Neville claims England career was a 'waste of time'

8:40 am on 22 August 2011

The former Manchester United footballer Gary Neville has described his England career as a "waste of time" and claimed his country have no chance of winning a major trophy for the next decade.

Neville played in three European Championships and two World Cups for England, but he was never as comfortable playing for his country as he was for United.

The right-back, who retired from football last season, played in the England team that reached the Euro 96 semi-finals and he claims the team are unlikely to improve on that performance in the near future because the culture of English football breeds technically inferior players.

Writing in his autobiography 'Red', he said: "We have our football culture in this country based on the traditional power player and I don't see us competing seriously for a major tournament for at least 10 years. I'm afraid we still have a lot of catching up to do."

Neville believes the abuse England's players received from fans and pundits when they went out of tournaments often made it an unenjoyable experience and left many fearing failure.

He says playing for England was one long roller-coaster with some ups and downs, but also quite a few moments when he wasn't really sure if he was enjoying the ride.

He says there is no doubt that too many players spend too much time fearing the consequence of failure when they pull on an England shirt.

Neville also admits success with United meant more to him then doing well for England.