FALL GUY Shaka Hislop opened up on his Wembley torment last night and insisted: "I don't regret sticking to my guns."
The Newcastle contract rebel paid a heavy price for turning down new terms from manager Kenny Dalglish two months ago.
He lost his place after a run of 20 successive appearances and was left looking on from the sidelines as Newcastle clinched a place in the FA Cup final.
Dalglish made it clear to the giant keeper that he had been axed because he refused to commit his future to St James' Park.
But as he faced up to being on the bench again when Newcastle meet Arsenal at Wembley next month, he stressed: "I wouldn't say I regret my decision over the question of a new contract.
"I would have given my right leg to have played in the semi-final at Old Trafford, but there's no point allowing yourself to be swept away by all the emotion.
"I feel it is important to try and secure the future for my family as well as myself.
"Being picked for the England squad was a massive boost and a great honour, and you can't help wondering what might have been if I had stayed in the Newcastle team."