Foster in as Capello moves goalposts

The England manager, Fabio Capello, will break one of his own rules today and select Manchester United's Ben Foster for the matches against Slovakia and Ukraine at Wembley, even though he is not playing regular club football. The guidelines that apply to David Beckham and other outfield players are being moved in order to assess at first hand a goalkeeper whose progress has regularly been handicapped by injury.

Foster, who never played for England Under-21s, was called into a senior squad for Steve McClaren's first game as manager in August 2006. He made one appearance, against Spain in February 2007, but after being recalled by United following two years on loan at Watford, he was unavailable for nine months with a knee ligament injury. Six appearances for the first team this season have included one Champions' League game away to Celtic and the Carling Cup final against Tottenham, in which he was named man of the match.

"When I arrived here, all the managers told me Foster is a very good keeper, but he was always injured," Capello said. "I've watched him and he surprised me with his confidence. He'll be with us. Depending on Sir Alex [Ferguson] of course!"

The squad who lost to Spain should be strengthened by the return of Rio Ferdinand, Steven Gerrard and Wayne Rooney. Jonathan Woodgate is pressing for a recall, and in view of the knee injury that may keep Theo Walcott out for several weeks, Aaron Lennon, who is in excellent form, could be promoted this week or next from the Under-21s. With Shaun Wright-Phillips also playing well and Beckham impressing the manager when he watched him playing for Milan, England suddenly have a surfeit of riches in one position down the right.

The Aston Villa contingent will be cut, with James Milner out and team-mates Ashley Young and Gabriel Agbonlahor under threat, although the manager said of Agbonlahor: "For forwards, goals are like medicine: very, very important."

The Villa striker has suffered from a growing trend towards individual abuse by fans, which Capello observed in Italy and Spain but not until this season in England. He is appealing once more to the Wembley crowd to back his team "as a 12th man" in Saturday's friendly and the more important World Cup tie on Wednesday week.

News
peoplePair enliven the Emirates bore-draw
Arts and Entertainment
tvPoldark episode 8, review
News
Britain's opposition Labour Party leader Ed Miliband (R) and Boris Johnson, mayor of London, talk on the Andrew Marr show in London April 26
General electionAndrew Marr forced to intervene as Boris and Miliband clash on TV
News
United States President Barack Obama, right, uses actor Keegan-Michael Key from Key & Peele to play the part of 'Luther, President Obama's anger translator'
video
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
  • Get to the point
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services

Day In a Page

General Election 2015: Chuka Umunna on the benefits of immigration, humility – and his leader Ed Miliband

Chuka Umunna: A virus of racism runs through Ukip

The shadow business secretary on the benefits of immigration, humility – and his leader Ed Miliband
Yemen crisis: This exotic war will soon become Europe's problem

Yemen's exotic war will soon affect Europe

Terrorism and boatloads of desperate migrants will be the outcome of the Saudi air campaign, says Patrick Cockburn
Marginal Streets project aims to document voters in the run-up to the General Election

Marginal Streets project documents voters

Independent photographers Joseph Fox and Orlando Gili are uploading two portraits of constituents to their website for each day of the campaign
Game of Thrones: Visit the real-life kingdom of Westeros to see where violent history ends and telly tourism begins

The real-life kingdom of Westeros

Is there something a little uncomfortable about Game of Thrones shooting in Northern Ireland?
How to survive a social-media mauling, by the tough women of Twitter

How to survive a Twitter mauling

Mary Beard, Caroline Criado-Perez, Louise Mensch, Bunny La Roche and Courtney Barrasford reveal how to trounce the trolls
Gallipoli centenary: At dawn, the young remember the young who perished in one of the First World War's bloodiest battles

At dawn, the young remember the young

A century ago, soldiers of the Empire – many no more than boys – spilt on to Gallipoli’s beaches. On this 100th Anzac Day, there are personal, poetic tributes to their sacrifice
Dissent is slowly building against the billions spent on presidential campaigns – even among politicians themselves

Follow the money as never before

Dissent is slowly building against the billions spent on presidential campaigns – even among politicians themselves, reports Rupert Cornwell
Samuel West interview: The actor and director on austerity, unionisation, and not mentioning his famous parents

Samuel West interview

The actor and director on austerity, unionisation, and not mentioning his famous parents
General Election 2015: Imagine if the leading political parties were fashion labels

Imagine if the leading political parties were fashion labels

Fashion editor, Alexander Fury, on what the leaders' appearances tell us about them
Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka: Home can be the unsafest place for women

Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka: Home can be the unsafest place for women

The architect of the HeForShe movement and head of UN Women on the world's failure to combat domestic violence
Public relations as 'art'? Surely not

Confessions of a former PR man

The 'art' of public relations is being celebrated by the V&A museum, triggering some happy memories for DJ Taylor
Bill Granger recipes: Our chef succumbs to his sugar cravings with super-luxurious sweet treats

Bill Granger's luxurious sweet treats

Our chef loves to stop for 30 minutes to catch up on the day's gossip, while nibbling on something sweet
London Marathon 2015: Paula Radcliffe and the mother of all goodbyes

The mother of all goodbyes

Paula Radcliffe's farewell to the London Marathon will be a family affair
Everton vs Manchester United: Steven Naismith demands 'better' if Toffees are to upset the odds against United

Steven Naismith: 'We know we must do better'

The Everton forward explains the reasons behind club's decline this season
Arsenal vs Chelsea: Praise to Arsene Wenger for having the courage of his convictions

Michael Calvin's Last Word

Praise to Wenger for having the courage of his convictions