James Collins' Wales future in doubt
10:02pm Thursday 12th September 2013 in National Football
NEWPORT’S James Collins could be set for international exile with neither side seemingly willing to back down in the extraordinary rift that has developed with national manager Chris Coleman.
The West Ham defender is in rude health for his club side West Ham, having been named the Hammer of the month for September, yet he was a shock absentee from the Wales squad who lost to Macedonia and Serbia to fall bottom of World Cup qualifying Group A.
However, in light of Ashley Williams missing the Serbia clash through suspension, Coleman claims he contacted Collins about a recall, saying: “James explained to me that he didn't want to come into the squad after being on stand-by because psychologically he was disappointed. But that's not the attitude I'm looking for.
"I'd rather someone turns around to me and says, 'I should be in the squad, you got it wrong and I'm going to roll my sleeves up to prove you wrong'. That's what I'm looking for and I didn't get that," added Coleman.
That claim was rejected firmly by the former Cardiff and Aston Villa defender who said: “"I was not contacted by Chris Coleman or anyone at the FAW to request I join up with the squad.
"Had I been asked I would have gladly represented my country."
Collins added that he felt "obliged to set the record straight".
He added: "I did have a conversation with Chris to try to seek clarification on why I had been left out of the initial squad for both the Macedonia and the Serbia matches - but at no stage did I state that I would refuse to play for Wales.
"I am proud to come from Wales and even prouder to pull on the red shirt of my country so the suggestion that I would ever refuse to play for them is plainly wrong."
The Argus contacted the FAW yesterday on the issue but were given no comment. A spokesman explained that he couldn’t say more until the FAW had spoken with boss Coleman.
However, it would appear Collins’ chances of featuring again under Coleman are slim.
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