Following Jermaine Defoe’s withdrawal from the England squad for the upcoming Euro 2012 qualifier against Switzerland, Fabio Capello has a decision to make.
Defoe’s wrist injury means that the Italian is left with just three strikers to choose from in the shape of Darren Bent, Peter Crouch and Bobby Zamora. To make things worse, the latter two both came off injured during the last game of the Premier League season on Sunday.
Now, the England boss could be tempted to stick with what he has got and play Ashley Young in behind Bent in attack – a tactic which has worked well in recent fixtures – or he could call up a replacement for Defoe.
Who should he go for though? Well, you might make a case for Manchester United striker Michael Owen. He is fit, available and has the small matter of 40 international goals.
Fair enough he hasn’t been playing too regularly at Old Trafford, but should Bent get injured either in the build-up to or during the game, who else is there? Wayne Rooney is suspended, while Steven Gerrard and Andy Carroll are injured.
Owen would give his all for the England cause if he was given the chance and surely he is a better option than recently capped players Jay Bothroyd or Kevin Davies?
It goes without saying that Owen might not be quite the player he was, but as far as finishers go, there still aren’t too many better.
Perhaps he doesn’t have an international future until he is playing regular Premier League football again and maybe Capello is too stubborn to change his mind on the former Real Madrid man, but for him not to even be considered during somewhat of a striker crisis for England would be criminal.
Anyone agree he should at least be discussed?