Tony Cottee: There are no real surprises in England squad
I'm not surprised with Rob Green or Matthew Upson making the squad and although it was unlikely Scott Parker was going to be picked, I must have sympathy for him,"" says Tony Cottee
I'm not surprised with Rob Green or Matthew Upson making the squad and although it was unlikely Scott Parker was going to be picked, I must have sympathy for him.
You get the feeling that maybe Scott was there just to make up the numbers and that if Gareth Barry was to be fit, there was little chance of him going South Africa.
He probably knew that himself, but if you're offered the chance to train with the national side you have to take it.
I was in the same position as Scott in Euro 88 and as a player you get the feeling you won't be picked and although you're disappointed, you have to just get on with it.
Boss Fabio Capello had said he would pick the squad by form and although Parker has probably had a better campaign for West Ham than Barry has had for Manchester City, the former Villa man has been one of England's most consistent performers in the last year or so.
I feel you need to take players who have international experience and I believe that has done for Scott in the end.
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Green (below right) probably deserves his selection and his performance against Mexico could even propel him into the number one spot.
I was at Wembley for the match and was sat behind him when he made two superb stops in the first half and his stock certainly rose after that display.
He has had a decent enough season, although it is fair to say he had been better in the previous two campaigns, but you could put that down to not having a regular back four in front of him.
Importantly he has never let England down and that is why I believe he has a great chance of starting against America.
You could state a case for Joe Hart to be number one, becaue he has probably been the most consistent English goalkeeper in the Premier League this season, but it is unlikely he will be number one.
David James is still a very good goalkeeper but consistency is still a problem, despite his superb agility and shot-stopping ability.
In the end it is fair to say that Matthew Upson is fortunate to be on the plane to South Africa because Michael Dawson of Spurs was tremendous towards the end of the season and could well have kept him out.
But again, Matthew has been the regular third choice centre back for England under Capello and when he played he has not let anyone down and is why he is going and the Tottenham man is not.
Another man to miss out is Benni McCarthy who has been left out by South Africa and he is certainly in poor shape.
David Sullivan has complained about the size of Benni's waist in the Mail and you cannot argue with what he is saying.
I'm sure we all read what he wrote and laughed, but you have to be careful when you attack players in public.
If Sullivan has spoke to Benni or his agent and told them his feelings face to face I have no problem with him having a go in the media, but if he has not then he has played on McCarthy's emotions a bit and it would probably have a negative effect on his confidence.
It would have been great to see Joe Cole back at the club, but when you see he is linked with Manchester United and Arsenal you know it's more of a dream than reality.
He is a tremendous player and somebody who would bring a huge amount of creativity to the team, but it was always highly unlikely he would want to come back, while the same will probably be said with the offer for David Beckham, but nonetheless the co-owners deserve a pat on the back for trying to bring the pair to the club.
I am not sure if it was the right thing to announce that the club have made offers for that caliber of player. But I suppose in football even when you try and keep stories quiet, the likelihood is that it will come out eventually anyway.
I do believe though that actions speak louder than words and it is best to start talking about players after you have actually secured their signature and they are part of your club.
You have to get the right balance between saying nothing as Terry Brown when he was in charge and the Icelandic chairman Eggert Magnusson, who was here there and everywhere.
Tony Cottee was talking to Matt Diner