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World Cup Squads: Robbo Left Out

Written By Justin on Thursday, May 13, 2010 | 10:24:00 PM

With provisional 30-man squads being announced, there are already some surprising goalkeeper inclusions and omissions. Blackburn Rovers keeper Paul Robinson, who played every minute of England's World Cup campaign in Germany four years ago, was left out of Fabio Capello's squad. This was not a surprise to most observers, but Rovers manager Sam Allardyce was not impressed:

'I think it’s the wrong decision completely,' Allardyce said. 'Fabio has made the biggest mistake of his selection process.

'If you look at his form for Blackburn Rovers, there’s not a better English goalkeeper who has consistently performed as well as he has. So it clearly can’t be anything else other than something that Fabio has against him.

'He’s always said that people who are in good form would get selected and there’s nobody in better form than Paul Robinson — 12 clean sheets in the Premier League speak for themselves. I don’t know what more he wants.'

I can see Big Sam's point. Robbo's been back to his best this season, after a couple of indifferent campaigns at Spurs, while David James and Robert Green spent their seasons battling injuries and relegation. Joe Hart is hugely talented, but inexperienced at the international level. You have to think Robbo's cool head might have come in handy in South Africa.

In other news, Gomes was rewarded for his sparkling form with Spurs with a spot on Dunga's squad. He'll be second choice to the awesome Julio Cesar.


chris said...

It's strange how England does not have a stand out keeper. Hopefully it will be their Achilles Heel when the US plays them!

Justin said...

Agreed, Chris. I think they are paying the price for none of the top teams having an English goalkeeper. I guess David Seaman was the last English keeper to play Champions League football and compete for real trophies.

TSVDP said...

David James was absolutely smashing in many games not the least was the FA Cup final, Joe Hart was pivotal to newly promoted Birmingham's successful campaign. Let's see, Everton and Tim Howard finished 8th in the league, 49 goals against, Birmingham 9th, 47 against http://www.soccerway.com/national/england/premier-league/2009-2010/regular-season/ . Hart 4th best goalkeeper in the league per ranking system: http://www.premierleague.com/page/Top10Keepers/0,,12306,00.html All in all, Hart should be honored as he must be the future of the England goalkeepers and I heard since October near perfect. I myself have always liked Paul Robinson a lot, he seems rather cool. One person said he was poor though in the shootout versus Portugal that sent England home in the last World Cup, so I don't know if that is so. Nearly all goalkeepers will make serious mistakes as PR did versus Croatia a few years ago, ball passed back to him, hits a rivet or something and he completely missed the ball to kick it away. Those things happen but I can see that in the World Cup, perhaps you need someone solid for shootouts, that must play a part, perhaps James is better. I'm American but I don't believe we will defeat this England team but should be able to get enough points from the other games to advance.

btw, good blog.

Justin said...

Thanks Tom, and thanks for the thoughts. You make some good points. I don't doubt the ability of either Hart or James. The questions around them are largely regarding experience. Hart has no experience at the senior level of a major international tournament, and the experience James has had with England (Euro 2004) was largely an unhappy one.

TSVDP said...

Are those "Under Armour" gloves per Paul Robinson? Interesting, they are getting into the act of everything and just a few years ago, I'd never heard of them.

I use Uhlsport, have some cheapie Nikes. I had another brand I don't know what it was but this guy talked me into selling him the gloves he liked them so much.

Thank you for the response Chris. I'll sign off now but in case you don't see it, I made a comment on the Packie Bonner blog entry. I've mentioned him time and again as one of my all time favorite GKs. Sorry, he seemed uptight or was not amiable to you, kind of puzzling and baffling, I know a whole lot about those Ireland teams he played for.