Football: Ferdinand and Beckham out of England squad

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The Independent Online
The withdrawal of Les Ferdinand from England's senior squad to face Chile means that Chris Sutton may have forfeited more than just a place in the B team.

Les Ferdinand has been forced to pull out of England's game against Chile on Wednesday. The Tottenham striker twisted his knee during Saturday's 3-0 win at Blackburn and has ruled himself out of Glenn Hoddle's squad for the Wembley friendly - which may make Chris Sutton, who pulled out of the B squad last week in a fit of pique, kick himself. The Blackburn forward would surely have been among the favourites to replace Ferdinand.

Hoddle also learned last night that David Beckham had withdrawn because of a hamstring problem he picked during Manchester United's 1-1 draw with Bolton on Saturday. He will not be replaced in the squad but Shaka Hislop, dropped by Newcastle on Saturday for not signing a new contract, has been moved up from the B squad as cover for Tim Flowers, although the Blackburn goalkeeper is expected to be fit despite damaging his ribs on Saturday.

Darren Eadie and Nick Barmby will both miss Tuesday's England B international against Chile. Barmby suffered a groin injury during Everton's 2-2 draw with Barnsley, while Eadie sustained a recurrence of a neck problem in the goalless First Division draw between his club, Norwich City, and Manchester City.

Leicester fans are calling for Leeds supporters to be banned from Filbert Street until the racist element at the Yorkshire club is kicked out after a host of "disgraceful" chants at Saturday's game between the two sides. The Football Supporters' Association will write to Leeds, offering the club their support for any anti-racism initiative they take.

Gary Mabbutt has been told he will not be kept on by Tottenham after nearly 16 years at the club. The 36-year-old club captain's contract runs out in summer.

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