Those behind the clamour for Michael Owen to go to South Africa next summer after his hat-trick against Wolfsburg can have little knowledge of the thinking of Fabio Capello.
Wayne Rooney is the No 1 striker, of that there’s no doubt.
The Italian wants a ‘big’ man alongside him, an Emile Heskey or a Peter Crouch.
And, if you take four strikers, as most coaches do, the option to Rooney is Jermain Defoe because of his goals and form for club and country.
If Owen’s included, he needs to be preferred to the Spurs’ player and that just isn’t on the current agenda.
He would need to stay fit, continue scoring goals and, as much in doubt as either of those, be a regular starter for his club.
If it were MY choice, I’d want to have the option of Owen on the bench if his country needed a goal to go through or stay in the competition.
Patently, Capello doesn’t think so and, worse for Owen, a return to fitness for the younger, faster, Theo Walcott will render all argument meaningless.