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Pearce names GB soccer squad for Olympics
Martyn Ziegler
06:27 AEST Tue Jul 3 2012

Five Welsh and 13 English players have been selected for Great Britain's men's Olympic squad for London 2012.

Team GB manager Stuart Pearce has not picked any Scottish or Northern Irish players for the tournament.

The announcement of the squad confirmed that David Beckham has missed out with Ryan Giggs, Craig Bellamy and Micah Richards named as the three over-age players allowed - all the others have to be under-23.

Swansea have three players named, the most of any club - Scott Sinclair, Joe Allen and Neil Taylor, while Tottenham defender Steven Caulker, who has also been included, was on loan at the Liberty Stadium last season.

Chelsea's Daniel Sturridge is also chosen, as is Arsenal's Aaron Ramsey and Manchester United Tom Cleverley. Tottenham's Gareth Bale would have been selected but has been ruled out due to injury.

Pearce said on Monday: "It has not been an easy task to finalise my squad for this tournament, and the stature of the competition and uniqueness of the occasion has underlined the importance of every choice I have made.

"With just 18 places it is very different from other international tournaments, the options are limited, but it is the Olympic Games and every player in this squad should be very proud they have a chance to compete for a gold medal on home soil.

"I remember the huge advantage we gained from playing in front of our own fans during Euro 96, and I'm sure with the nation behind us it could be a fantastic tournament for us."

London 2012 will be the first time that Team GB have competed in the men's football competition since the 1960 Olympic Games in Rome, where they finished third in their group.

Team GB kick off their campaign at Manchester's Old Trafford against Senegal on July 26, play the United Arab Emirates at Wembley on July 29, before their final group fixture against Uruguay at Cardiff's Millennium Stadium on August 1.

Team GB chef de mission Andy Hunt said: "After a 52-year absence from the Olympic Games, it is fantastic to welcome the men's football squad to Team GB for London 2012.

"Representing your country at the Olympic Games is a very unique, special experience and I am sure this talented and determined group of men's footballers will play a full part as members of Team GB at our home Olympic Games.

"The squad selected possesses a good blend of youth and experience, with 16 of the 18 selected athletes playing their football at the very highest level in the Premier League last season.

"In Stuart Pearce they have an experienced and passionate manager and I am sure the younger players will learn a lot from their time with Team GB at the Olympic Games.

"Football fans from the across the UK are regarded worldwide as among the most passionate and knowledgeable supporters in the world and this summer offers a unique opportunity to get behind Team GB on home soil.

"I am confident that this famous vocal support will drive the young players on to produce many memorable and inspirational performances at the Olympic Games this summer."

The Great Britain men's football squad for London 2012 is: Jack Butland (Birmingham), Jason Steele (Middlesbrough); Ryan Bertrand (Chelsea), Steven Caulker (Tottenham), Craig Dawson (West Brom), Micah Richards (Manchester City), Neil Taylor (Swansea), James Tomkins (West Ham); Joe Allen (Swansea), Tom Cleverley (Manchester United), Jack Cork (Southampton), Ryan Giggs (Manchester United), Aaron Ramsey (Arsenal), Danny Rose (Tottenham), Scott Sinclair (Swansea); Craig Bellamy (Liverpool), Marvin Sordell (Bolton), Daniel Sturridge (Chelsea).


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