Chelsea midfielder Danny Drinkwater declined an England call-up but manager Gareth Southgate says any talk of club-versus-country rows is “nonsense”.
Drinkwater is lacking fitness and news of his decision comes after six players pulled out of Southgate’s squad for friendlies with Germany and Brazil.
“I spoke to Danny earlier in the week but he feels he is not fit enough to play,” Southgate said.
“I am not a manager who wants to reel players out until they break. I don’t take risks with players.”
He added: “I have man-to-man discussions with them around where they are at and how much risk we want to take.
“Hearing this talk of club v country, it is a nonsense.”