Gabby for EnglandBy: Martini Extra Dry | August 19th, 2008
After netting a 7 minute hat-trick in Villa’s opening game of the Premiership season, what has Gabriel Agbonlahor done for his chances of working his way into Fabio Capello’s plans? He was included in the England squad for the games against Switzerland, USA and Trinidad & Tobago, but Agbon now finds himself replaced by Arsenal youngster, Theo Walcott.
Not one to let a knock back get him down, Aggy put in a great performance on Sunday against Man City and produced the goods three times. England managers have notoriously been keen on players who can steal the headlines, with feats such as 3 goals in 7 minutes, so my money is on him being in the next squad Capello picks.
Gabby isn’t quite as strong a contender for an England place as Ashley Young (who it is a CRIME not to have selected!) but what Gabby has in his favour is that England’s strikeforce is much weaker than the attacking midfield or winger position that Young would take.
England’s attack for this friendly is:
Emile Heskey: He’s had his time and failed to fit in with both the team’s style and the fans. I am one of Emile’s very rare fans, I think he’s a great player who is worth his weight in gold when played to his strengths, but he has had a rough time for England and I can’t see him ‘doing a Hargreaves’ and winning the fans over anytime soon.
Wayne Rooney: I’m pretty sure this is officially considered treason in England… but I’m not a big Wayne Rooney fan. Anymore, that is. And for England. OK, OK, don’t hate me right away. I do see that he’s a fantastic player, but these days he tries to do too much. It’s a stupid gripe to have with a player, I know, but what I want from an attacker is for him to be there in the box when we attack. Rooney often isn’t. Having said this, I’d probably still start him for England for the flashes of genius he can bring. And… if we had the right players around him (which we don’t) he could be invaluable again for England.
Jermaine Defoe: Likely to get a start and produced some good form for Portsmouth last season. If we can get him playing to his best he can be good for England. I’m a little uneasy with having to rely on him as our main centre forward though.
Theo Walcott: Exciting talent, scares the shit out of full backs but who would he play alongside? With Heskey there’d be no goalscorer, with Rooney they’d both be dropping back too far and have little box presence and with Defoe you’d lack height and experience. Crouch and him might possibly work. Maybe.
Fair enough, Gabby doesn’t exactly solve the England attacking problem but he does deserve a chance to shine on the big stage. So come one Fabio, pick more Villans!