Scholes: Capello call too late
Paul Scholes has admitted he would have returned to the England side if he had been given more time to consider an offer from Fabio Capello.
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The Manchester United midfielder quit the international scene after Euro 2004 to concentrate on his career at Old Trafford.
But he was offered the chance to return when Capello looked to add greater experience to his squad ahead of the World Cup in South Africa this summer.
Liverpool centre-back Jamie Carragher accepted the chance to return from the wilderness, but Scholes elected not to make a shock comeback with the Three Lions.
However, the gifted Red Devils midfielder has revealed that if the Italian had spoken to him sooner, the outcome would have been different.
"It's a big decision and I wasn't really given enough time to think about it, so I decided not to take up the offer," he told the Oldham Evening Chronicle.
"If they'd asked me earlier I probably would have accepted.
"There are players in the squad who have spent nearly two years flying all around the world helping England qualify for the World Cup, whereas I haven't been involved for a long time.
"It wasn't a case of wanting to go on holiday, it was the fact that I got the call so close to the tournament, and also I didn't want to take the place of someone who helped get England to South Africa.
"The idea just didn't sit comfortably with me."
Scholes has also offered his sympathy to United team-mate Rio Ferdinand, who will miss the tournament having suffered a knee injury in England's first training session in South Africa.
"I really feel for Rio, especially getting hurt so close to the start of the action," added Scholes.
"It's not just sad for Rio but for England as well, because he is captain and an important figure."