Worthington: McCartney quit by text

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Northern Ireland boss Nigel Worthington has confirmed that George McCartney has retired from international football.

The 29-year-old defender missed Wednesday night's dismal 3-0 loss to Scotland in the Carling Nations Cup after failing to join up with the squad in Dublin earlier this week. McCartney, who is currently on loan at Leeds from Sunderland, sent a text message to one of Worthington's staff to inform them of his decision.

Worthington said: "The situation is straightforward. George McCartney sent a text message to one of my coaching staff to say he no longer wished to play international football."

He added: "At some stage someone must have had a word with him to say it might be a good idea to speak to me, so I got a call from him on Monday morning.

"That was the end of it. He has tried to contact me a few times since but I have not accepted the calls because he doesn't want to play for his country.

"That is his decision and as far as I am concerned the matter is closed."

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