David Beckham’s injury from this summer’s World Cup finals in South Africa is a blow for England’s chances of lifting the trophy, but will his absence open the door for City stars Shaun Wright-Phillips and Adam Johnson to shine at the tournament?
SWP will of course be a candidate to replace the former United man on the right wing but will face competition from Tottenham’s Aaron Lennon, who has been in fine form for the North London club this season.
But SWP could also find opposition in the face of team-mate Adam Johnson, who came off the bench to score a stunning goal in City’s 1-1 draw at Sunderland on Sunday. City manager Roberto Mancini has already warned SWP that his place is under threat from the former Middlesbrough man and this could also extend to the national side.
Although Johnson only signed for the blues in January, he has put in a string of impressive performances which have no doubt caught the attention of England manager Fabio Capello and he is being tipped to make the journey to South Africa in the summer.
But Johnson’s versatility could mean he and SWP both make Capello’s final squad. His ability to play on either left or right flank will surely have been noted by the Italian, who will be eager to fill the gap on the left wing that has been void of a left footed player for several years.
And with the likes of Peter Crouch scoring for fun in an England shirt and Wayne Rooney finally learning how to head the ball, a good couple of wingers will be exactly what England need if they are to stand any chance of lifting the trophy for the first time since 1966.
With a possible place in the World Cup squad, that should be enough incentive for both to perform at their highest level for the blues as we make our final push for fourth place.
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