Since David Seaman hung up his boots and gloves, England have had a problem with the position of goalkeeper. David James would probably be my first pick at the moment, with the Portsmouth cat having had an excellent time of things since signing for Pompey. Last campaign, he was one of the Premier League’s outstanding perfomers, although it’s clear that he’s not getting any younger. Meanwhile, Paul Robinson and Scott Carson have both struggled when given a chance for the national team, although help could be at hand from an unlikely source.
Arsenal goalkeeper Manuel Almunia has an English wife and has never represented the Spanish national team. Which means that Fabio Capello can pick him for England, if the Italian was that way inclined. Not that everyone is in agreement with this potential selection, with the Press Association reporting that Rio Ferdinand has reservations.
But Ferdinand told BBC Five Live: “That’s for the FA to decide but I’m sure if he was picked for Spain he would play for Spain in front of England. So if that happens I don’t think it’s really working right.”
He added: “So if Spain had picked him now and he had a choice of playing for Spain or England who is he going to pick?
“I’m sure he’d pick Spain so that means he is not English.”
What about your international manager Rio? Don’t you think he’d shun England for the chance to manage Italy? The Arsenal keeper is a lot more English than Capello, having played in the Premier League for a number of seasons and now being married to an English lady. Is the Manchester United defender wrong to make this sort of comment, especially as Almunia could yet be called up and feature in the same team as the ex-West Ham player?