Mystery in goal remains for England
With nearly two weeks to go before the World Cup, England's starting goalkeeper remains a mystery.
Robert Green, who played the first half in England's 3-1 win over Mexico and made two close-range saves, said the uncertainty has sparked a "healthy" competition among him, Joe Hart and David James.
"In international football, chances don't come along very often," Green said after making his 10th England appearance Monday. "We're all in the running and it shouldn't be any other way. … It's something that's healthy where we keep pushing each other."
Hart, who was on loan at Birmingham from Manchester City this season, took over for Green in the second half.
"I'm still looking over my shoulder," said Hart, who has no clue whom coach Fabio Capello will pick for England's opening game against the United States on June 12.
"I couldn't tell you," Hart said. "He keeps his cards very close to his chest. I think everyone's done well and had their chance."
James had been Capello's first choice and has 49 England appearances, but the Portsmouth 'keeper is injury-prone and turns 40 just after the World Cup. Ben Foster, who was among the leading backups, was dropped from Capello's 30-man squad.
Green and Hart have gone from backups to potential starters at a time when English goalkeeping, the envy of the world in the days of Gordon Banks and Peter Shilton, appears at its lowest. The situation has been so unpredictable that even Spanish-born goalkeeper Manuel Almunia had been mentioned as a possibility because he qualifies for British citizenship and has not played for Spain.
Goalkeeper has been one of Capello's main concerns, and he has been experimenting since taking the job. The Italian coach continued to generate suspense after Monday's game, declining to say if he was any closer to making a choice.
"I'm happy with the performance of Green, and Hart also played well," he said.