Hoddle is convinced by Campbell

Click to follow
The Independent Online
Sol Campbell's superb display for Tottenham in Saturday's North London derby has convinced Glenn Hoddle he has no need to bolster the squad for England's World Cup clash with Moldova.

When Hoddle named his 22-man squad for the Wembley clash last Friday he said that he would be adding one more player after the weekend's Premiership action. But the coach clearly hinted that he feared the worst for Campbell, who had missed Tottenham's previous two games with a combination of knee and ankle problems.

Describing Campbell as "50-50," Hoddle said that he would only feel Campbell had a chance of being fit to take on the Group Two minnows if he came through the Arsenal game unscathed.

Hoddle, however, went to Highbury on Saturday to watch Campbell produce a commanding performance at the heart of the Tottenham rearguard as 10- man Spurs held on for a battling point.

And while he is already without Tony Adams and Martin Keown, the coach was sufficiently reassured by what he saw of Campbell to decide against calling anybody else in.

FA spokesman Steve Double said: "We've had no injuries reported, and Glenn isn't going to add to the squad. We expect everybody to report tomorrow."

An injury-free weekend was exactly what Hoddle needed after the crop of crocks that had wrecked his plans.

The coach is forced to plan without Alan Shearer, Stuart Pearce, Robbie Fowler, Matt Le Tissier, and Jamie Redknapp, with Andy Cole and Tim Flowers only just back after surgery, while Paul Ince is suspended.

One decision Hoddle will have to take will be over his choice of captain for the game. With Shearer injured and Ince banned, Pearce would have been the likely choice had it not been for the hamstring injury he sustained in Newcastle's European triumph in Zagreb.

Arsenal's David Seaman might be one option, although Hoddle has spoken previously of his belief that goalkeepers are not best-placed to captain a side.

And that could see Gareth Southgate, likely to be handed the armband at Aston Villa full-time after the sale of Andy Townsend, given the job on a one-off basis.

When he named Shearer as his choice, the coach put Southgate forward as one of the players who could demonstrate "leadership" on the pitch, and who had been considered.

Howard Wilkinson yesterday announced the England squad to face Yugoslavia in the opening qualifying match of their European Under-18 Championship campaign next week, insisting his motto as team boss will be: "First teach a player how to play, then how to win."

Wilkinson, who takes charge of the team as part of his duties as the Football Association's technical director, recently revealed his blueprint for the future entitled "Charter for Quality".

In the blueprint, the former Leeds manager advocated a complete overhaul of the current framework in which young players are developed.

He said: "The over-riding factor is to try and use all England teams from under-21 level downwards to develop players for their own benefit and for the benefit of their club and country.

"That means the responsibility to win is nowhere near as great for my lads as it will be for those who will play for the senior England team against Moldova next Wednesday.

"The charter can be best summed up by the phrase `teach him how to play before you teach him how to win'.

"So while it is my job to pick the best team possible, it doesn't mean my selection will be dominated by the sole aim of winning the game."

ENGLAND UNDER-18 SQUAD v Yugoslavia (at Millmoor, 9 Sept): Weaver (Leyton Orient), Simonsen (Tranmere), Cooper (Nottingham Forest), Griffin (Stoke), Ball (Everton), Johnson (Crewe), Wellens (Manchester United), Staton (Blackburn), Nicholls (Charlton), Dixon (Leeds), Brown (Manchester United), Upson (Arsenal), Taylor (Blackburn), Woodgate (Leeds), Haslam (Sheffield Wednesday), Smith (Watford), Dudley (Notts County), Owen (Liverpool), Noel-Williams (Watford).