EX-TOTTENHAM defender Adam Smith has revealed his shock over Harry Redknapp's allegations that senior England players had ducked international duty.
The former Cherries manager, now in charge at QPR, instigated a bitter row with claims that English players had asked him to get them out of call-ups during his three-and-a-half year tenure at Spurs.
Cherries right-back Smith came through the youth ranks at White Hart Lane and was on the fringes of the first-team under Redknapp in a career punctuated by seven loan moves - including a successful stint at Dean Court during 2010-11.
The 23-year-old received 11 caps for England under-21s having represented his country at each age group from under-16s prior to a permanent switch to Dorset in January.
Ahead of the Three Lions' academic World Cup Group D clash with Coasta Rica tonight (5pm BST), skipper Steven Gerrard and boss Roy Hodgson called for Redknapp to name and shame the players in question, a request he refused.
However, Smith insisted he had never experienced negative attitudes towards England during his time in North London and that he could not envisage professionals shying away from international football.
Smith told the Daily Echo: “I couldn't comment on individuals but I never got the vibe (at Spurs) that people didn't want to play for their country. I definitely never heard anybody talking like that.
“Wherever I have been, whether players had been picked for England or other countries, I never got the impression that people did not want to go and, to be honest, I could not imagine anybody not looking forward to it.
“The satisfaction of getting that call up, knowing you're doing well enough to get in the England team, I just don't understand how anyone would not want that. I can't get my head round it.
“To be picked ahead of everybody else is such a great achievement, it shows you are recognised as one of the best players in your country. Even at under-16s level it is a great feeling and I am still very proud of it.”