Belfast Telegraph

Oxlade-Chamberlain on England radar

Fabio Capello is ready to fast-track Arsenal teenager Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain into his Euro 2012 plans.

The England boss has been encouraged by the reports he has received about Oxlade-Chamberlain, the 18-year-old who left Southampton for Arsenal in the summer. After scoring on his first senior start for the Gunners in their Carling Cup win over Shrewsbury, the winger also found the net on Champions League duty against Olympiacos in midweek.

And, providing England qualify for next summer's European Championships by grabbing at least a point in Montenegro on Friday, Oxlade-Chamberlain is likely to be propelled into the senior ranks. Capello told FATV: "I have been impressed with him. He is a really interesting player. He is a good player, who has a lot quality and is playing at a really high level."

He added: "He will be a really interesting player for the next friendly games before the Euros, which hopefully will happen for us."

With matches against Spain and Holland - currently ranked numbers one and two in the world - already pencilled in for the post qualification period, Capello will have an opportunity to see how all his youngsters deal with the very highest level of opposition.

However, he is delighted both Oxlade-Chamberlain and Welbeck - who grabbed United's second against Norwich yesterday - scored on Champions League duty in midweek given it is that level of competition that provides the stiffest test of ability in the club arena.

"For players to score goals in this competition is really important, both to improve and find the confidence in their quality," said Capello, who was due to name his squad for the Montenegro encounter on Sunday evening.

"It is the same when you play with the national team.

"When you play in the Premier League, you can score but the whole thing is really normal."

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