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Shawcross told England days not over

Stoke City captain Ryan Shawcross has been told not to give up on his England dream despite his demotion from the squad for Wednesday's friendly against Brazil.

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After several near misses, Shawcross, 25, finally made his international debut as a substitute in the defeat in Sweden in November.

The Potters defender had hoped to keep his place in Roy Hodgson's squad for a game that marks the FA's 150th birthday celebrations, but the recovery of Manchester United's Chris Smalling put paid to those hopes.

Stoke assistant manager Dave Kemp, however, believes Shawcross should not get too disheartened as he is sure he will force his way into another England squad at a later date.

"Everybody here would have been disappointed for Ryan after missing out on this squad," he said. "But he shouldn't concern himself too much. I'm sure he will do well enough in the future to get himself another chance."

Stoke will be keeping an eye on the fortunes of half a dozen players who are away on international duty this week, in the countdown to Saturday's Premier League visit of Reading.

Striker Kenwyne Jones - who was linked with a move away from the Potteries in the transfer window - is playing in a home friendly for Trinidad & Tobago against Peru, while defender Geoff Cameron will appear for the United States in a World Cup qualifier in Honduras.

"The two biggest worries at the moment are Kenwyne and Geoff because of the distances and time differences involved," Kemp said. "You just hope they return to your club in good time and with no new injuries."

Meanwhile, full-back Marc Wilson, who has been out with a broken leg since the home draw against Sunderland at the end of October, made his comeback on Tuesday by playing 70 minutes of the 3-2 friendly defeat against Northampton.


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