Writer: Tim Stillman
Date:Monday September 10 2012
England U-21s boss Stuart Pearce has given a broad hint that he would like to be able to select Arsenal's Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain for the England U-21s next month. Pearce's young Lions are one point from securing their place, but if they lose to norway on Monday, they will need to go through the playoffs in October. Pearce has indicated he would like to have the option to call up full internationals that are eligible, Chamberlain chief amongst them.
That call comes from Roy,` said Pearce in the Daily Mail. 'If somewhere down the line the England manager says he isn`t going to use this player or that player, and he could be of use to you, my conversation and relationship with Roy is going to be paramount.
'Oxlade-Chamberlain is with the seniors, so too is (Jack) Butland. Kyle Walker can still play, so can Phil Jones and Danny Welbeck. When you go through the pool, you will see it is pretty good.
'But Roy giving the chance to Chamberlain to go and play, along with Welbeck and the others. If they play well, they stay in the seniors. That is how it works.`
Pearce appears to have completely misunderstood what his role for the U-21s actually is. The fact that Chamberlain is, not only in the seniors, but going by Hodgson's team selection he is a starter, means his job is done. The aim of the U-21s, according to the F.A.'s own statutes, is to ready players for the seniors. If you have a teenager in the starting XI, it suggests they're pretty much ready and their need for the U-21s is null and void.
But of course, this isn't about Chamberlain's development. It's about Pearce's naked self interest. Ever since taking the U-21 job, the remedial squeaky voiced tossbag has been on a one man ego trip to try and win some tournament or other and propel himself into England managerial reckoning.
Since his managerial ideas to date number amongst appointing a beanie baby as his assistant at Manchester City, (who presumably advised him to stick David James on upfront) as well as producing the one British performance at this summer's Olympics that nobody gave a toss about, it's a wonder he's still in the job. Especially when he doesn't actually seem to be aware of what his job spec entails.
Longer term, this suggests that Pearce would be willing to select Chamberlain for next summer's Euro U-21s, should England qualify. Presumably Terry Burton will follow suit and request Arteta and Cazorla to turn out for Arsenal Reserves, so that we can win our U-21 league? It won't be of any use to either player, but it would beef up Burton's CV nicely.
Date:Monday September 10 2012
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