• On-loan midfielder keen to play at World Cup next summer
• 'I'm desperate to play well for Everton. What follows is a bonus'
Gareth Barry believes a fresh start at Everton can deliver a place at next summer's World Cup, should England qualify, after insisting his form for Manchester City last season was worthy of Roy Hodgson's squad.
The 32-year-old joined Roberto Martínez's team on a season-long loan on deadline day having been excluded from Manuel Pellegrini's plans at City. Barry insists the lure of regular first-team football and a reluctance to see out the final 12 months of his £120,000-a-week contract influenced his decision more than the prospect of an England recall. But he admits he is targeting a place at what could prove his last international tournament.
Barry, who has not played for England since missing Euro 2012 with an abdominal injury, said: "It would be a massive bonus at this stage to go to the World Cup. Everton is my focus, I'm desperate to play well for Everton and then what follows would be a bonus.
"My last appearance for England was before the Euros. I made the squad on the back of winning the title and then picked up the injury. That was the downturn and affected my call-ups from there. Last season I still felt I was playing consistently well in a top team to merit call-ups but it's about opinions and other players can affect it too. But right to the end of last season I felt I was playing well enough. I spoke to Roy after the last Euros when he wanted to see how my injury was, but then you don't make the squad and you lose touch. I'm fine with that. I don't need explanations every time I'm not playing or in a squad."