INTERNATIONAL FRIENDLY – ENGLAND vs DENMARK !
Venue: Parken Stadium, Copenhagen
Date: 9th February, 2011
Fabio Capello would be determined to put behind the 2-1 loss to France in November but the coming fixture is a tough trip to Copenhagen. Fabio Capello named a 25 man squad in the hope of covering all eventualities and thus assuring him ample set of players to continue his experimentation of blooding in the younger players into the team. But in resent days there have been a few caulties to injuries due to the hectic Premier League schedule. With absence of Rio Ferdinand due to calf strain Capello is going without the regular captain and will look for the senior players to guide the team in the coming game.
With Steve Gerrard, Peter Crouch and Ben Foster have all been released from England’s squad for Wednesday’s game against Denmark because of injuries. Birmingham’s Foster has a minor thumb injury and Tottenham striker Crouch a back problem, with both being released after fitness tests at England’s team hotel in Watford on Sunday evening and adding to the list is the speedy Aston Villa man – Gabriel Agbonlahor , who is skipping the trip due to personal reasons as confirmed by The Football Association.
With Steven Gerrard out with groin problem sustained after his team’s 1-0 victory at Stamford Bridge, is sure to miss out after what happened in last round of friendlies when Gerrard got injured against France and damage was done to the relationship between England and Liverpool due to his toren hamstring, six minutes from the end of a friendly against France in November thus making Glen Johnson is the only Reds man remaining in the squad. Gerrards non-availability brings up an oppourtunity to the others in the pecking order such as the likes of Gareth Barry and Scott Parker but by what Capello has stated in the media where he goes on to compare Jack Wilshere to Makalele. It seems certain the 19 year old might just get a look in against the Danes after being earmarked by Capello for a midfield holding role. The 19-year-old Arsenal player may now be allowed to move further forward, unless the England boss opts to deploy a more orthodox wide player on the left, having already stated his intention to pair Rooney with Darren Bent in attack.
Fulham’s David Stockdale has also been selected in the international squad for the first time after putting a string of good performances in the absence of the veteran Mark Schwarzer for Fulham, due to his involvement in the Asia Cup with Australia. He most propabably cements the second-choice keeper position behind number one Joe Hart.
Another suprise inclusion into the travelling squad is 20 year old Kyle Walker who has gone from strength to strength in his loan spells at QPR and Villa, thus catching Capello’s eye as he does have a dearth of talent at right back with Glen Johnson’s form being sporadic this season and doubts over both Phil Jagielka and Micah Richards. Walker told reporters “Fabio Capello said I needed to improve defensively. But I am still learning the game and will do extra work at training to try and improve, If that is what he feels I need to do, then I’m prepared to do that. It is a dream to play for England. I’ve played for Under-19s, 20s, 21s so the next step is the full squad. “
Due to some of these injuries Capello has called reinforcements in form of West Ham duo Robert Green and Carlton Cole. With the defence mostly predictable in form of Ashley Cole and Glen Jhonson as full backs and Teery monitoring the center, we wait to see what combination Capello decides to play in the mid-field area with lack of quality left-sided player in the squad. Chelsea’s Frank Lampard looks certain to be named captain for the first time and Rooney pairing up with Darren Bent in attack might just be what England need to get back to winning ways!
# bala (c)