Ferdinand omission a dangerous ploy from Hodgson
Published: 24.05.12 / Written by: David Gold
It was a strange decision by Roy Hodgson to dispense with Rio Ferdinand in favour of John Terry.
Neither are particularly in best shape or form anymore. They have both seen better days. But one is facing a racism charge, though as yet unproven and disputed by Terry. The other, Rio Ferdinand, has his flaws, but by all accounts is a popular player. Unlike Terry, who is particularly unpopular and is rapidly losing admirers. If there are any left at least.
So the decision to take him was bizarre. The logic to not taking Ferdinand can be understood, but not in the context of Terry’s selection. If you’re not taking Ferdinand, don’t take Terry either. It is bizarre. Sure, Terry brings experience, but so does Ashley Cole, Frank Lampard, Steven Gerrard and Wayne Rooney.
It is not as though England lack defenders either. Gary Cahill, Joleon Lescott, Phil Jagielka, Phil Jones and Ledley King all offer options. And Ferdinand’s experience could have been useful around the camp.
Elsewhere, there was less controversy. Alex Oxlade Chamberlain was the eye catching pick, and it could be that he is selected to play behind Andy Carroll in the role Wayne Rooney will assume when he returns from suspension.
Carroll’s selection has bemused too, but in all fairness to the forward, he has played well recently. Though there is little doubt Liverpool wasted a lot of money on him, this is not his fault. He showed good ability at Newcastle, struggled to settle at Liverpool, but has come into his own of late. And he has a combination of both physique and a good header, and technical ability and a good finish. He will be a useful player to have, though Peter Crouch would feel rightly aggrieved to have missed out. The former Spurs man has an enviable goalscoring record at international level and will wonder what he has to do to win selection.
Danny Welbeck won a deserved call up after a good season with Manchester United and Jermain Defoe too, despite not featuring for Spurs, is worthy of a place for his experience and goalscoring ability.
Further back, perhaps the most glaring omission is that of Adam Johnson. The technical Manchester City attacking midfielder has the ability to make something happen, to take a man out of the game and produce a moment of skill and brilliance. His technical skill and intelligence would have brought something England miss without Jack Wilshere or Tom Cleverley.
Hodgson has certainly been bold with his squad. But gambles can backfire, too...