Belfast Telegraph

Alan Green: Capello will miss Owen on South African adventure

It probably hasn’t had the slightest impact on the thinking of Fabio Capello — word is he’s had a bit of a ‘downer’ on the player ever since England played in Paris early in his reign as coach — but I think Michael Owen’s injury is bad news.

Of course, I have reservations. Clearly, he hasn’t the pace anymore that so electrified his early playing career but that run and goal against Argentina in 1998 remains amongst my favourite memories.

And not playing regularly for Manchester United never helped his cause. As Sir Alex said in response to constant queries, “What’s Owen’s problem at Old Trafford? He only has one — Wayne Rooney.”

But nothing had changed my opinion that Owen (above) was STILL worthy of a place in the England squad for South Africa. His superb finish in the Carling Cup Final amplified that he remained a ‘man to turn to’.

Unfortunately, injury now rules Owen out and denies Capello an opportunity to change his mind.

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