He told The Sun: “I am like Sir Alex. When people doubt him he always wants to prove them wrong.
“I was brought up at a club where they don’t give in and they always fight back when they are being criticised.
“He’s the reason I’m in the position I am today. I had help from my parents but without him I wouldn’t have been given half the chances I’ve had in my football career.
“People were saying he wouldn’t win the league again but that is spurring him on this season. And if people think my England career is over, I want to show it isn’t.
“When Steve McClaren rang me up and said I wasn’t in the squad for his first friendly match against Greece it was a horrible feeling, absolutely gut-wrenching.
“I felt the same when I was walking off the pitch after been sent off against Argentina in the 1998 World Cup and when I heard I would supposedly never play for Real Madrid again.
“There’s that helpless feeling because there is nothing you can do, it’s out of your hands at that moment. But then you either accept it or you fight back. Whether I get the chance to play for England again is not my decision but I’m a fighter and if I get that chance again I’ll take it.”