Rio Ferdinand withdraws from England squad
The decision was made following a meeting between Rio Ferdinand and England manager Roy Hodgson in London on Sunday evening.
At the meeting though, Rio confirmed he will, however, be available for selection for the summer and autumn fixtures.
According to the FA website, Hodgson said: “I’m disappointed Rio will not be available, but due to the detailed pre-planned training and medical programme he must follow it’s not possible.
“However, I was pleased that Rio called and asked to meet with me. It was important to hear from him personally about the way he must manage his body between games.
“This is not to say he cannot play back-to-back games – he can and has proven so. He’s out this time due to particular pre-planned details already in place for his programme.
“I must place on record how I was impressed with his commitment to playing for England and I look forward to hopefully selecting him for squads in the future.”
Ferdinand said: “It was important for me to be able to speak with Roy face to face and explain the situation, and one thing I made clear was that my passion and commitment to represent my country is as strong as ever.
“It is disappointing that I won’t be able to play a part in the upcoming games but I told Roy that I want to continue to be available for England and I look forward to working with him in the future.”
Steven Caulker, who was supposed to be in Stuart Pearce’s Under-21 squad, will now join the seniors.
Ferdinand also tweeted his disappointment about not being able to withdraw from the squad, seen below.
I’m Gutted I had to pull out of england squad, but it was the right decision for my intricate pre-planned programme.
— Rio Ferdinand (@rioferdy5) March 18, 2013