columnist Rob Facey looks at the latest club vs. country row and
wonders whether it really is one rule for the big four and one rule for the
Fabio Capello has called up Steven Gerrard for England's
friendly against Germany this week, despite Liverpool claiming that the
midfielder is unable to play.
The club ruled out Gerrard on Saturday evening after he
helped steer the Reds to victory over Bolton, but Capello has sparked another
club vs. country row by insisting that the his own medical staff have the final
say on whether or not he is able to play in Berlin, according to The Independent.
Manchester United's Rio Ferdinand and Wayne Rooney are out and
question marks remain over Chelsea's John Terry, the England captain. His team
mates, Joe Cole and Ashley Cole, are also not fit to play.
But is Capello right to question the actions of Rafa Benitez
and his Liverpool staff – Surely if the club say that he is unable to play then
the national side must believe them?
Is this just the latest example of the mistrust between club
and country that has crippled English football in recent years and what can be
done to smooth the relations between club and country?
With such high profile figures as Sir Trevor Brooking
condemning the work of the FA recently, is Capello just the latest on a long
list to fall foul of the authority's inability to put proper procedure in
Or is Capello only doing this to make sure that he has at
least some steel in that midfield?
So many people are out injured isn't it sensible to have his
own staff look over injuries that have only seemed to crop up after Saturday's
Is there one rule for the big clubs, who think that they
have the right to withdraw players at will, and another rule for the others?