Micah Richards says he will not plead with Roy Hodgson to pick him for England, insisting he is not a "charity case". The right-back had already potentially affected his international prospects by refusing to go on the manager's Euro 2012 standby list in favour of answering Stuart Pearce's call to be part of Team GB for the London 2012 Olympics.
Richards's last appearance for England came after Fabio Capello left and Pearce was caretaker manager for the match against Holland in February 2012, and the Manchester City defender has been again passed over for the upcoming World Cup qualifiers against Montenegro and Poland. However, he is not contemplating any clear-the-air discussions with Hodgson.
"It was one of those where Stuart Pearce asked me to go to the Olympics and not go on standby [for Euro 2012]," Richards claimed. "If I went on standby I might not have made the Olympics and that was one of the highlights of my career. I'm not going to beg for him to pick me, I'm not some sort of charity case. If he needs me I will be there because everyone wants to play for their country."
Asked about playing international football again, the defender added: "I always take it as it comes. I have not been involved for two years. Stuart Pearce gave me a game when he got it, I want to play for my country and I would be happy if I did."
City's James Milner, meanwhile, who played in England's goalless draw in Ukraine in the previous qualifier, is hopeful that if a berth is secured for next summer's tournament i n Brazil, he will be part of the squad. "It's in the back of my mind, of course, but it's not something that I think of constantly because you always want to play well for your club and if you do it consistently you are giving yourself the best chance of playing for your country. Obviously I hope I'll be part of the squad that travels to Brazil."
England go into the final matches leading Group H by a point. "We've put ourselves in a great position and I think if we'd been offered the chance of winning our last two home games to qualify at the start, we'd have taken it," Milner said.
"I've been lucky enough to play in a European Championship and a World Cup before so it would be great to add another major tournament to that list. Playing against Brazil last summer you could see what a great tournament it will be by the atmosphere we sampled during that game [a 2-2 draw at the Maracanã]. The Brazilian people eat, breathe and sleep football and we saw that for ourselves last summer. So it's a World Cup that no one wants to miss."
Milner has started only three of City's seven Premier League games. While not talking directly about how this might affect his England prospects, regular football remains the winger's ambition. "It's not possible to play in every game and there is fierce competition for places," he said. "But I'd obviously like to play more than I have done so far and that is true of any player anywhere.
"I started against Wigan and Aston Villa [and Everton on Saturday] but as long as the team is winning, that's the main thing. I just have to make an impact when I do play and make sure I take my chance, try to play my part and influence games when I have the opportunity. With the amount of games we're playing, everyone is going to have their chances and the nature of football means there will be injuries along the way. I'm sure I'll get plenty of starts and the rest is up to me."