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 Posted by ESPN Staff
Nov, 21, 2007

MClaren insists he won't resign after England debacle

England coach Steve McClaren insists he will not resign despite England's abject failure to qualify for Euro 2008.

After the 3-2 defeat at home to Croatia which saw Russia qualify for next summer's tournament ahead of his side, McClaren expressed his regret and offered an apology to the fans.

But the former Middlesbrough manager firmly insisted he would not stand down as national team boss.

He told BBC News 24: 'I'm not stepping down. Ultimately I take responsibility and I accept that. It was my job to get us qualified and I failed to do that.

'I don't want to discuss my future at the present moment. I am trying to get over that result.

'We feel exactly the same (as the fans), believe you me, we know how they are feeling. You should see the dressing room, they are so disappointed to have let so many people down.'

He added on Sky News: 'I pick the team and said over the 12 games I would be judged and I will be.'

Asked if he would resign, McClaren said: 'No. I have no intention of doing that.

'Obviously it's not for me to decide, I'm not discussing anything at this present moment.

'I am not looking to the future, I am thinking about this game, what could have been, what wasn't, and really how we get over this.'

Former captain David Beckham was clearly disappointed but pledged his support to McClaren, while insisting he would not retire from international football.

'We are disappointed as a team and obviously the nation will be disappointed about not qualifying. There's not much more you can say.

'If you don't win games you don't qualify.

'Tonight was a tough game but playing at Wembley we needed to win and we didn't. We just didn't perform tonight and that's the end of it.'

After Israel beat Russia on Saturday, England's fate was in their own hands and Beckham admitted they had wasted an opportunity.

'We were given a second chance but you have to take them. It was handed on a plate to us before the game. So we are disappointed.'

Asked about McClaren's future, Beckham added: 'I can't answer that.

'At the end of the day he has been the manager for the duration of this qualifying campaign and results have not gone our way but the players have stuck up for him and I think people have seen how the players felt about him.

'At the end of the day it's not the players and team that decide who comes and who goes.'

Asked if he would continue playing for England if picked, Beckham said: 'Without a doubt. I'm not retiring.

'I said that the moment I was taken out of the team and the moment I came back into the team. I'm not stepping down.'

England's stand-in captain Steven Gerrard said: 'The first goal was a big blow.

'The idea was to start really quickly, get the first goal and get after them, let them know they are in a game.

'But then we found ourselves 2-0 down and had a mountain to climb.

'We got back into it and then should have shut up shop.'

Gerrard would also not be drawn on McClaren's future.

The Liverpool midfielder added: 'He is disappointed. Not much was said because you've got a very disappointed dressing room and what you say is not going to sink in. Everyone is down.

'I don't think it is for any player to comment on the manager's future.'

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