FOUR months ago, it was all sweetness and light. Now, it’s a total mess. With the World Cup getting ever closer and England losing another key player in Wayne Bridge, this is suddenly a team in crisis and Capello must be pulling his hair out. Let’s go through the side as it stands.
Our No1 goalkeeper is unknown, our No1 right-back is unknown. One centre-back is riddled with a bad back, the other is well off-form having been dragged through one scandal after another and our left-back’s high-profile marriage is in tatters and has a broken ankle.
In midfield, Lennon is laid up with a worrying groin tear, Gerrard hasn’t kicked a decent ball all season for a player of his calibre and Lampard, for me, looked old against Inter Milan the other night. Gareth Barry, meanwhile, is drifting along at Manchester City in a very average season.
Up front, Crouch and Defoe are in and out and Heskey can’t get a game at Villa. Thank the lord for Wayne Rooney. Make him captain; knight him, even.
Sure, Bridge’s decision adds to the crisis, but I can’t say I blame him. It has to be the right decision because it is his decision. Football is trivial when it comes to personal matters and if Wayne feels he would be uncomfortable or awkward in any way then it’s the only decision to make.
Just like Jamie Carragher, Wayne Bridge is a reserve. Making long trips and not kicking a ball grinds you down after a while. This, however, is not a Carragher issue, this is us shooting ourselves in the foot. It’s self-inflicted and it’s the squad who loses out.