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Jagielka cancels holiday to join England

Phil Jagielka was expecting to be teeing off in the south of Spain on a golfing holiday at the start of June. Instead he will be undergoing a more rigorous workout as a late call-up to the England squad for Euro 2012.

Jagielka was disappointed when told he was not in the original selection and booked the holiday to cheer himself up. He had agreed to be considered as a backup in case of injuries though. A calm and assured performance against Norway meant he was an obvious choice when Gareth Barry was forced to withdraw.

"I wanted the opportunity to come to the Euros," Jagielka said, "maybe not at the expense of somebody else, but I'm just delighted to be here now."

Jagielka was favoured by the previous manager Fabio Capello, but since then, Chelsea’s Gary Cahill has overtaken Jagielka in the pecking order. "You look at Gary Cahill and you can't help but say how well he's done," Jagielka said. "After six months he's got a Champions League winners' medal and formed a nice partnership with John Terry. If I were a betting man, I'd gamble on those two starting as first choice."

He’s probably right, but England can rely on the Everton player as a useful deputy. Modest, professional and realistic, Jagielka is the perfect embodiment of the mood that the new manager Roy Hodgson wants to instil in his squad. They are not world-beaters, but with a little application, tactical discipline and defensive solidity, England could manage to negotiate the Euros without disgracing themselves.

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