Football

No place for Walcott in England squad

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Fabio Capello has ignored the advice of Arsene Wenger and decided not to hand Theo Walcott an instant recall to the England fold.

The Arsenal star returned to first-team duties earlier on Sunday after a back problem and marked the occasion with a goal in a six-goal romp against Blackburn.

Wenger claimed he would have no problem if Walcott was then called into Capello's squad for the World Cup qualifiers against the Ukraine next Saturday and Belarus at Wembley the following Wednesday. However, Capello has adopted a cautious approach and decided against drafting the 20-year-old into his squad for the first time this season.

In fact, despite predictions of mass experimentation, Capello has not made many changes at all.

The absences of Jermain Defoe and Ben Foster have been put down to injury, a hand in the case of the Tottenham man, with Manchester United's goalkeeper ruled out with an unspecified problem.

It leaves Ashley Young as the only player to miss out without an obvious excuse, his despair in contrast to the ecstasy of Gabriel Agbonlahor, who is recalled along with experienced duo David James and Rio Ferdinand, who have both had their injury problems in recent times.

England squad for the World Cup qualifiers against Ukraine and Belarus on October 10 and 14:

Robinson (Blackburn), Green (West Ham), James (Portsmouth); A Cole (Chelsea), Terry (Chelsea), Johnson (Liverpool), Bridge Manchester City), Lescott (Manchester City), Brown (Manchester United), Ferdinand (Manchester United), Upson (West Ham); Milner (Aston Villa), Lampard (Chelsea), Beckham (Los Angeles Galaxy), Gerrard (Liverpool), Barry (Manchester City), Wright-Phillips (Manchester City), Carrick (Manchester United), Lennon (Tottenham); Agbonlahor (Aston Villa), Heskey (Aston Villa), Crouch (Tottenham), C Cole (West Ham), Rooney (Manchester United).

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Topics:
Tottenham Hotspur
Arsenal
Portsmouth
Ben Foster
David James
Gabriel Agbonlahor
Football
Manchester City
Blackburn Rovers
Chelsea
Premier League
Manchester United
Ashley Young
Jermain Defoe
Aston Villa
Liverpool
Theo Walcott
Rio Ferdinand

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