Manchester United defender Wes Brown has won a recall to the England squad for Wednesday’s friendly with Uruguay. Gary Neville is also brought back by coach Sven-Goran Eriksson for the match at Anfield- as is Kieron Richardson- so good to see England go RED!!
Darren Bent gets a chance to stake his claim for a World Cup place, but Phil Neville and Paul Konchesky miss out. Michael Owen, Ashley Cole, Sol Campbell, Jonathan Woodgate, Kieron Dyer, Alan Smith, Chris Kirkland and Owen Hargreaves are all injured.
Eriksson picked a 23-man squad with few surprises. Neville and Jamie Carragher both return after injury and Kieran Richardson, like Bent, steps back up to senior level after playing for the under-21 team. Eriksson also confirmed he wanted to pick Woodgate for the friendly at Anfield but the former Newcastle defender was injured in Real Madrid’s Champions League defeat to Arsenal.
The England boss said to The Sun:
“He’s unlucky. Every time I decide to pick him, even in the past, he’s been injured a few days before I announce the squad. The same has happened now. It’s a big question mark of course. I hope he will play more regularly when he’s fit because he’s an extremely good football player and defender. But if he plays one game and misses the next, I don’t know what to do because you can’t change your 23 players once the tournament has started. You have to be careful.”
Eriksson issued the same warning to his other injury victims. He wants proof of fitness before the squad leaves for Germany. That means Campbell, a veteran of the last two World Cups for England, faces a serious fight for a place. Meanwhile, Eriksson says he will study the possibility of using Rio Ferdinand in a midfield role ahead of the World Cup.
As BBC Radio Five reported Erikkson as saying:
“In some games maybe we need a sitting midfielder. Frank Lampard and Steven Gerrard can do it but they are not playing that role at their clubs. Rio could be a choice. Ledley King is another choice.”
England squad for friendly against Uruguay at Anfield on Wednesday:
Goalkeepers: Robinson (Tottenham), Green (Norwich), James (Man City).
Defenders: Young (Charlton), Bridge (Chelsea), Terry (Chelsea), Brown (Man Utd), Ferdinand (Man Utd), King (Tottenham), G Neville (Man Utd), Carragher (Liverpool).
Midfielders: Lampard (Chelsea), Beckham (Real Madrid), Gerrard (Liverpool), J Cole (Chelsea), Jenas (Tottenham), Wright-Phillips (Chelsea), Carrick (Tottenham), Richardson (Man Utd).
Forwards: D Bent (Charlton), Rooney (Man Utd), Crouch (Liverpool), Defoe (Tottenham).
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