Bobby tipped to get England call

Bobby Zamora will be crossing his fingers his name is included

in the new-look England squad Fabio Capello unveils on Saturday

night.

With Emile Heskey retired, Capello is on the look-out for a new

forward ahead of Wednesday’s tussle with Hungary at Wembley.

Capello would have picked Zamora in his 30-man provisional World

Cup squad had it not been for an Achilles injury that required an

operation and left the Fulham man fearing he would not do himself

justice in South Africa.

At 29, Zamora hardly represents a bright new future for

disgruntled Three Lions supporters and, in a sense, represents the

malaise affecting the England team.

But, having shown a reluctance to utilise the talents of both

Darren Bent and Gabriel Agbonlahor, Zamora should at least figure

in Capello’s squad.

There could be a strong Arsenal flavour to it too as Theo

Walcott, Kieran Gibbs and 18-year-old Jack Wilshere are all tipped

for inclusion.

Wilshere was a notable absentee from Stuart Pearce’s Under-21

squad to face Uzbekistan, so the midfielder may be elevated to

senior ranks far sooner than many expected, although he did catch

the eye during an excellent half-season on loan at Bolton.

As Jack Rodwell and Danny Welbeck will be on Under-21 duty it is

difficult to see which other youngsters might gain selection aside

from Manchester City’s Adam Johnson, whose omission from the World

Cup looks like a mistake given the lack of impact from Blues

team-mate Shaun Wright-Phillips and the other wide-man in South

Africa, Aaron Lennon.

The gamble of selecting Jamie Carragher and Ledley King despite

not playing any part in qualifying did not work and neither will be

considered for the Hungary game, which serves as a warm-up to next

month’s Euro 2012 double-header with Bulgaria and Switzerland.

Instead, Everton’s Phil Jagielka, who might well have been in

South Africa anyway but for the serious knee injury that kept him

out for 10 months, could fill a spot along with Michael Dawson of

Tottenham.

The other area where England are down on manpower is

goalkeeper.

James’ move to the Championship and Bristol City effectively

ended his international career and there must be serious question

marks over Robert Green ever being asked to play for his country

again.

It means that a battle is now expected between Joe Hart and Ben

Foster, who was preferred to the Manchester City keeper for matches

against Belarus and Brazil last term, to become Capello’s

first-choice.