After all should England’s number 1 really be a goalkeeper whose side finished 4th from bottom of the Premiership and were very lucky not to get relegated. This season Green let 66 goals into the back of his net which meant that West Ham had the joint-5th most conceded goals in the league. Now it could be argued that he didn’t have the greatest of defences in front of him and whilst to some extent this may be true, it mustn’t be forgotten that this backline did include England defender Matthew Upson.
However in the majority of games Green played in he did look assured and pulled off some great saves this season, so it could be argued had it not been for Rob Green then West Ham could well have been relegated. But it is still worrying that the club’s overall form wasn’t the best as it does reflect on the player. The same can be said about England’s alternative, David James, whilst he had a good season for Portsmouth the fact that they were relegated and finished bottom of the Premiership doesn’t make good reading. Still James has shown great character to force his way back into the reckoning ever since his “calamity James” days and recently had the backing of one of the greatest goalkeepers in the world, Dino Zoff.
Zoff was virtually the same age as James when he lifted the World Cup for Italy in 1982 and the legendary goalkeeper said of James: “I’ve seen James and he has quality and is physically strong. The important thing for him now is to show tranquillity, and I think he is starting to do that.”
So therefore whilst club form does play a part, it shouldn’t mean everything and as long as the individual applies himself and plays well then he should be considered for the team. But if players were going to be selected on club form then Joe Hart should be England’s number 1. The on-loan Manchester City ‘keeper has been in stunning form for Birmingham this season and was voted into the PFA Team of the Year. The only thing going against Hart is inexperience, having picked up just three England caps and England would hate to see another Scott Carson moment occur should he be selected for a crucial game.
England currently have a good blend of goalkeepers in the squad which gives them various options, James brings a wealth of experience to the team, Hart is young but getting better and better and Green is an assured presence. It’s a good problem for Fabio Capello to have and the best bet would probably be Green but whoever Capello does decide to go with, all have valid reasons to be number 1.
Who do you think should be England’s Number 1?
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