Football

Everton boss backs Baines for England

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Everton manager David Moyes has backed left-back Leighton Baines' claims for a place in England's World Cup squad.

The 25-year-old, who twice featured in Fabio Capello's squad last year, could force his way into the reckoning following injury to first-choice Ashley Cole.

Cole fractured his ankle playing in Chelsea's defeat at Everton on Wednesday and now faces a race against time to prove his fitness for the tournament in South Africa.

Moyes, speaking before Cole's injury, said: "I think the England left-backs will be Ashley Cole and Wayne Bridge and then I think it is toss-up between Stephen Warnock and Leighton Baines."

He added: "I think Bainesy on his day is a match for any of them and I know Fabio Capello knows about him. He is certainly in and around the reckoning.

"He has been a very consistent player for us this season, as he was last year.

"I think Bainesy is one of the players who has kept a good level of performance even when things weren't going well."

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Premier League
Everton
Leighton Baines

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