Tuesday, September 06, 2011

Debutant Dan eyeing up first-team spot

With an impressive full debut for England U21s under his belt, might Dan Gosling have played himself into contention for a starting berth against QPR on Monday? He won't be able to dislodge the central midfield pairing of Mr T and Yohan Cabaye, and Spidermag remains a fixture on the left, but he might displace Obertan Kenobi on the right, or alternatively come in for Peter Lovenkrands if Alan Pardew opts to repeat his approach against the Mackems of leaving one up front.

Meanwhile, in the senior England squad there's been a familiar warning for a familiar face. It seems the multi-million-pound move to Liverpool hasn't persuaded Rocky to mend his ways and curb the partying and pint-guzzling that regularly got him into trouble on Tyneside. Wor Al has had a pop at Fabio Capello for making the warning public, but Rocky's managers at both international and club level certainly have a right to demand he cleans up his act - otherwise it could be a sorry case of wasted talent.

Elsewhere, FC Sion's unceremonious ejection from the Europa League for fielding ineligible players has earned Celtic an undeserved reprieve and with it the chance for Fraser Forster to pit himself against some of the top sides in Europe. Celtic's group contain both Udinese, who ran Arsenal very close in their Champions League qualifying play-off and who boast Italian international sharp-shooter Antonio Di Natale up front, and Atletico Madrid, who have just replaced Sergio Aguero with Falcao. Suffice to say that our loanee 'keeper can expect to be kept busy...

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