Arsenal right-back Hector Bellerin has defied Arsene Wenger’s wishes and expressed his desire to represent Spain in the Under-21 European Championships this summer.
Bellerin has suffered a dip in form towards the end of the current season, and was dropped for the FA Cup semi-final victory over Manchester City – although did come on as a substitute.
The Spaniard was the subject of fan anger when he was booed against Crystal Palace but Wenger came to his defence and insisted he was still struggling following an ankle injury from last year and as a result should rest in the summer.
“He has not come back to his level since he has been injured. I think for a while he was [still feeling his ankle],” Wenger said at the time.
“It is not ideal after a long season. He should have a rest and prepare for next season.”
But Bellerin, if called up, will ignore Wenger’s advice and represent his country in Poland and insisted he is now fully fit after his injury.
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“No. I really want to play,” he said when asked by IBTimes about Wenger’s comment. “Representing Spain is very important. If [Spain Under 21 manager Alert] Celades gives me the chance I'll be there.
“Those are opinions of the managers. I have to keep working. The truth is that I had a difficult injury but I think that I am at 100% now and I'll try to prove it when I get the chance.”