"He should know more than most what I'm like, my character and how much I fight to play. That was the case with my recent op and the Croatia game.
"I managed to squeeze in two training sessions before the game. One was with Chelsea's youth team and the other was with England.
"That was after surgery and five weeks out. I was not 100 per cent but gave it a go.
"I was in constant touch with Steve McClaren and the England medical team, informing them of my progress.
"Even Chelsea knew how much it meant to me to play for England despite it being such a risk.
"But it was decided I would be doing neither myself nor England any favours by playing and I agreed to sit it out.
"I don't normally respond to criticism but when it is someone criticising my commitment to England I feel I have to come out and stick up for myself."