THE VOTE Who should England play up front with Wayne Rooney out injured?

Ollie Irish

13th, August 2007


With Wayne Rooney almost certainly out of England’s forthcoming Euro 2008 qualifiers with yet another case of knackered metatarsal, Pies has to pose the inevitable question: who is Steve McClaren going to play up front? Michael Owen has barely kicked a pre-season ball so even he might be out of contention. Click your two choices from the list below (or add another suggestion as a comment). We will take the top two as the Pies chosen strikeforce.

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  1. Sven says:

    Emile Heskey

  2. bleustilton says:

    In all seriousness, I have a sneaking suspicion Heskey will be picked.

  3. Col says:

    Love for Matty Derbyshire to get picked. He’s a bit young though and he doesn’t play for a “big” club though. Plus McClaren won’t even know where Blackburn is…

  4. whitebuildings says:

    None of them are comparable with Rooney, and with Crouch suspended for the Israel game I think we’re a bit fucked. Who was McClaren going to partner Rooney with anyway? Owen? We’d probably be better off just picking our under-21 team supplemented by Gerrard and Hargreaves, Rio Ferdinand and Ashley Cole (if fit). I’d sooner have Derbyshire and Lita than an unfit pairing of Ashton and Owen anyway.

  5. Joe says:

    Is there any English striker on Boro’s books? It’ll be him then.

  6. Rich says:

    Have you not seen Ashton’s hair? the lad’s got no chance of getting in :)
    I’d love to see Derbyshire make a 70th minute subs appearance though, he never seems short of confidence or ability.
    If Alan Smith played regularly in a favoured position he might be worth a look. But would he step on Gerrard’s toes if he’s playing slightly behind the main striker?
    Zamora, Chopra or Agbonlahor aren’t international quality (well, maybe Agbonlahor in a few seasons but not yet).
    I don’t really see a problem with our strikers though, we have so many (too many) similar types that can all (on paper at least) interchange and make up the front 2. The real problem is behind them, namely ignoring Carragher for so long and insisting on playing Paul Robinson, Rio Ferdinand and Fat Frank.
    Give David James or Scott Carson (As a Wednesday fan that was priveledged enough to see him play for us last season, he will become a fantastic stopper once he gets regular games) another chance. Give Sol Campbell another chance or Micah Richards a go in place of Ferdinand. Carrick or Hargreaves would do more in Lampards position whilst also not getting in the way of Gerrard so much.
    There are problems with any international team swamped by quality players but i still doubt McClaren’s ability to do anything other than what is expected by the press.
    Half the time we’re not actually playing that bad, it’s just that our play under McClaren (and Sven before him) is just so predictable. Teams only have to lockdown our 2-3 creative players and BAM! it’s Andora all over again.

  7. FFC says:

    ‘None of them are comparable with Rooney’
    Rooney hasn’t done Jack Shit in an England kit for 3 years, he’s massively overrated. Ship in Derbyshire, Ashton and Agbonlahor, use the Germany match to find out which combo works best and use that in the quali’s.

  8. whitebuildings says:

    I agree that Rooney hasn’t done much for England since 2004, but he’s been hampered by injury, suspension, being played as a lone striker and not having a regular partner who compliments his style. If he got a good run in the team with a balanced and settled midfield quartet, and a decent striker alongside him then it might be a different story.
    Also, any striker would struggle given that our midfield is constantly passing sideways and backwards and generally creates fuck all.

  9. Pete says:

    Johnson is one of the only available strikers who is playing week in, week out for his club. Its about time he was given a proper run out- he is the only striker other than owen who makes forward runs behind the defence.
    Hopefully his presence would encourage the team to play the ball forwards instead of backwards.