Monday, 23 February 2009

England’s keeper problem.

Fabio Capello was in the stands at Craven Cottage at the weekend for Fulham’s Premier League match against West Brom. The only two players he was realistically looking at were Andy Johnson (who must’ve impressed, bagging a goal and assist) and Baggies ‘keeper Scott Carson.

The former Liverpool stopper still hasn’t recovered from THAT howler against Croatia 16 months ago and has started to build a collection of goalkeeping mishaps. There was nearly another one against Fulham when a lack of communication between Carson and centre half Leon Barnett nearly saw the defender score a comical own goal. But the very fact Capello is even considering Carson shows the extent of the goalkeeping problem we have at the moment.

Ten years ago we were well stocked in the goalkeeping department, with David Seaman, Nigel Martyn and David James. But now, despite trying a host of players, we still aren’t sure who our number one is. Here is a few of the options we have:

David James
The current number one, and probably the best of the bunch. He is very experienced but he is always prone to unforced errors, like in the recent England friendly against Spain when he spilled an easy cross. Age is also a factor, but is there anyone else out there?

Paul Robinson
Looked set for a long career as England’s number one but suffered a crisis of confidence at Spurs, and of course that howler in Zagreb. He still hasn’t recovered, and now finds himself in a relegation battle with Blackburn.

Robert Green
A consistent performer at his club West Ham, Green perhaps hasn’t been given the run in the side he perhaps deserves. Question marks remain over whether he is up to International standard but he at least deserves to be given a chance to prove himself.

Scott Carson
Looked a promising keeper a few years ago when at Liverpool, but ever since the Croatia game he has been making far too many costly errors for his club. Looks an outside bet for me.

Ben Foster
A promising season on loan at Watford three years ago earned him a first cap. But he has suffered a string of serious injuries. Has he recovered sufficiently to return to his previous form? First-team football should be high on his list of priorities.

Chris Kirkland
Another keeper who showed early promised and if it wasn’t for some badly timed injuries he would have won a handful of caps by now. The Wigan number one has been plagued with back problems in recent years, but if he can show some consistent fitness he may be in with a shout.

Joe Hart

A regular in the Under-21 side Hart has already earned a call-up to the squad. But since the arrival at City of Shay Given, will a place on the bench hamper Hart’s development?

Who do you think should be England’s number one? Is there any other contenders? Feel free to leave comments and your suggestions