Manchester City manager Roberto Mancini has told winger Adam Johnson that he has to fight for a place in the first team and produce his best football at the club if he wanted to make a mark at the international level, ESPN reports.
Johnson had earlier blamed his lack of playing time for his exclusion from the Euros, having spent most of last season on the bench for Mancini’s side.
The manager said, “It’s not my fault he didn’t play at the Euros. Some players seem to think that when they don’t play, it’s the manager’s fault.”
“For the national team manager, it’s difficult to choose a final squad of 23 players. Adam is a very good player and probably deserved to go, because under [Fabio] Capello he played regularly.”
“But Adam found himself in the same situation as Micah Richards, who is also a good player. Sometimes, some players have to stay at home.”
“But it depends on Adam, not me – if he deserves to play, he’ll play. He is good enough to play at a top club, but he has to play at the highest level all the time, not sometimes up and sometimes down.”
The 25 year old former Middlesborough man has been forced onto the sidelines due to the Manager giving the nod to David Silva and Samir Nasri on the wings, largely because of his inconsistent form, and is reportedly being targeted by both Liverpool and Sunderland as a potential summer signing.