No place for Cotterill as Toshack opts for experience

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The Wales manager, John Toshack, opted for experience yesterday when naming his squad for next month's Euro 2008 qualifiers at home to Germany and away to Slovakia.

That means there is no recall for the Wigan striker David Cotterill, who was dropped last season from the senior squad amid speculation that Toshack was unimpressed with his attitude. Cotterill got his chance to prove himself last week in the Under-21 side who won a friendly in Sweden 4-3, a game in which he scored and impressed the coach, Brian Flynn.

But Cotterill stays in the Under-21s, being named in the squad to play France in Grenoble on 7 September, the day before the seniors face Germany in Cardiff.

It is believed that Flynn gave Toshack a glowing report on Cotterill's efforts, but with Freddy Eastwood, Craig Bellamy and Robert Earnshaw ahead of him in the pecking order, Cotterill may not have even got on the pitch against Germany.

Toshack knows he needs all the experience he can find against Germany and back into the squad come James Collins, Bellamy, Jason Koumas, Carl Fletcher and Carl Robinson, who all missed the win in Bulgaria last week due to injury or unavailability.

The only addition to that squad is Cardiff's utility midfielder Paul Parry, who has impressed this term with the Ninian Park club.

Andrew Crofts, Mark Jones and Daniel Nardiello, youngsters who all did well in Bulgaria, retain their places.

Toshack will also have been hugely relieved and impressed by Gareth Bale's Tottenham debut at Manchester United, the 18-year-old following up an impressive 45 minutes in Bourgas with his first full 90 minutes in the Premier League after a worrying thigh injury.

Wayne Hennessey is expected to keep his place in goal after going unbeaten in three appearances, but Germany, and Slovakia in another Group D qualifier in Trnarva four days later, could well be more demanding outings for him.

Toshack had no doubts about naming Eastwood, the 23-year-old Wolves striker who scored on his debut in Bulgaria and impressed with his hard-running and direct approach.