Campbell And England

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Sol’s had it pretty good as an England player, hasn’t he? Despite the emergence of John Terry, he’s always been picked to start the big games (when fit). I wonder whether that’s now changed.

As I sat watching Ferdinand and Terry tidying up against the admittedly unexceptional Northern Irish, it struck me that Sol’s position of pre-eminence could well now be over. Terry is bound to be one of the front-runners for player of the season, while Ferdinand’s name is pretty much the first on the England teamsheet.

Clearly, his injuries have affected his chances, but sometimes an enforced absence is all it takes for the balance to shift from one player to another. One thing’s for sure: When he is fit and firing on all cyclinders, Sony Goran Ericsson is going to have one hell of a difficult decision to make.

Even if Sol is no longer Mr First Choice, it could end up benefitting us. Evidently, at 30, his body is not as injury-defiant as it used to be, and from a purely selfish point of view, the less gruelling his England schedule, the better.

On the same subject, Campbell should be back from injury soon. That could see a partnership of Campbell and Senderos – for the first time. It doesn’t take a genius to work out one of the reasons why our defence has never got going this season – the central defensive pairing has never stayed the same long enough.

Here are the different partnerships we’ve had, in chronological order;

Toure Cygan (3)
Toure Hoyte (1)
Toure Cygan (2)
Toure Campbell (4)
Toure Cygan (4)
Toure Campbell (7)
Toure Senderos (1)
Toure Campbell (2)
Cygan Campbell (1)
Cygan Senderos (1)
Toure Cygan (1)
Senderos Cygan (2)
Toure Senderos (1)

That’s six different central defensive partnerships. And if Campbell gets paired with Senderos, that’ll make it seven.


Arsenal since about 1979. Thick, thin and all that.

This Post Has 233 Comments

  1. Anti

    Campbell at his best offers you a solid presence at set-pieces, but he does not and will ever have the confidence to bring the ball forward smoothly and efficently.
    Lots will say, that’s not his job, but, one saw the difference when Cygan and Senderos matched up against Sheffield.

    Sheffield is no Juve, but the effect of a centreback bringing the ball forward and deep into the opposition territory posed all sorts of problems. For one, it enbaled Vieira to receive the ball with his back towards his goal and not the opposition’s. As simple as that is it enabled a certain fluidity to the attack.

  2. Anti

    We need an edit button.

  3. Gerry Gooner

    Welcome back to the voice of reason! Senderos started for the Swiss last night and looked quite good. He may be part of the answer after all…but I think we still need quality cover at CB.

  4. Chris

    Ah fook you’re back you dirrrty Karnt.

    Fook off

  5. Liam's shinpad

    Have to say it…Terry now looks class, even if he does play for Chelski *spits*. I personally haven’t seen much of Senderos (what with the recent introduction of Pay for View matches here in the Holy Land) to give him my seal of approval. Thing is, do Arsenal go and buy a class act with experience in the summer and then risk losing Senderos or Toure in the near future, who will undoubtedly feel pissed at the possible lack of chances…?

  6. RotorGoat

    I’d have said yes, deffo we need a new one, but with the arrival of Super Phil I’m now not so sure.

    If they all stayed fit, we’d need just three good central defenders (which we now have). But they don’t, so I’d be inclined to buy another, and not some permy-haired champagne-drinking superstar, but someone youngish and hungry with something to prove.

    I’m mighty impressed with Sandy Ross to be honest, and it’d be a great shame if he wasn’t now a number one choice in that position.

  7. oliverchaddock

    Seriously, King is the guy to buy. From what i’ve seen Senderos is class and should be first choice partner for Sol, with Toure on the bench as backup for that position (and any other position in the team if needed, bar GK). With Vieira, Gilberto, Flamini and Cesc our central midfield is pretty much set as well.

    But it would be nice to have someone extra, someone who is versatile enough to play in c. defence or c. midfield, and that’s where Ledley King comes in.

    The only problem, of course, is that we’d have to offer a fortune to stand any chance of prying him away from Sp*rs, and would he be satisfied being 2nd (or 3rd) choice?

    Of course, we could sell Vieira and play King full time as our defensive midfielder… if Inter are willing to offer Toldo + 16 million (enough to buy King)…

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