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England World Cup squad: Cappello calls up Carragher and King

JAMIE Carragher and Ledley King have been given the chance by Fabio Capello to aid England's cause at the World Cup in South Africa.

• Recalled: Jamie Carragher (left) and Ledley King

Neither man has featured for England under Capello.

Carragher retired from international duty in 2007 and although Capello did call King into his squad for the double header against Slovakia and the Ukraine in April last year, once it was discovered the Tottenham man's chronic knee condition prevented him from training he was quickly ditched.

However, with long-time squad men Wes Brown and Joleon Lescott ruled out by injury and doubts remaining over first-choice central defenders Rio Ferdinand and John Terry, Capello has decided it is worth checking out the experienced pair once more.

In all probability, having persuaded Carragher to make himself available, it is hard to see Capello not selecting the Liverpool veteran in his final 23-man squad when it is announced after the friendly with Japan in Graz on May 30.

And, as it turned out, Liverpool's failure to reach next season's Champions League had a positive spin-off for Capello.

Carragher said: "The FA got in touch a few weeks ago and asked if I would have a rethink, due to injury problems. I said I would make myself available.

"The World Cup and Champions League are the highest levels of football. I'm not getting any younger, we have no Champions League football next season and I am keen to work under Fabio Capello."

King is a slightly different matter.

Harry Redknapp was confident his skipper would be handed a World Cup place and there is little fear for the defender's actual ability.

Yet a recent run of four games in 15 days is more far more than Redknapp's assessment that the 30-year-old requires a six-day break in between matches for his chronic knee problem to settle down and Capello appears to be facing a straight choice between King and Spurs team-mate Michael Dawson, one of two uncapped players in the squad.

The most recent speculation had touted Owen Hargreaves to be handed a shock call and Joe Cole to miss out.

In the end, the opposite proved to be the case.

By naming Gareth Barry, Capello was expressing confidence the Manchester City man would recover from the ankle ligament injury he suffered against Spurs last week, thereby rendering Hargreaves' selection pointless.

Scott Parker's presence does provide cover for Barry should his recovery take longer than expected, but with Michael Carrick included despite his recent poor form, the West Ham man may struggle to make it.

For Cole however, it is a chance to prove he is capable of influencing matches in the manner that has been robbed of Capello by David Beckham's Achilles injury.

Cole was left out of the most recent friendly, against Egypt in March, with Capello declaring the Chelsea man "was not the same player" as the one who performed so well during his early days in charge, before major knee surgery.

However, Cole has performed well enough since to warrant a call-up, and now it is up to him.

Manchester City's Adam Johnson offers a more direct threat on the left wing, hastening his selection as the other new boy in Capello's squad.

Surprisingly, the England coach has opted to select just five forwards, with Darren Bent joining Wayne Rooney, Emile Heskey, Jermain Defoe and Peter Crouch, to the exclusion of Bobby Zamora and Gabriel Agbonlahor.

Missing out on today's squad does not necessarily end all hope of reaching the World Cup.

Once his final 23-man party is named Capello can still make changes due to injury and those replacements do not have to come out of the original 30.

England's 30-man provisional squad for the World Cup finals:

Goalkeepers: Joe Hart, David James, Robert Green.

Defenders: Leighton Baines, Jamie Carragher, Ashley Cole, Michael Dawson, Rio Ferdinand, Glen Johnson, Ledley King, John Terry, Matthew Upson, Stephen Warnock.

Midfielders: Gareth Barry, Michael Carrick, Joe Cole, Steven Gerrard, Tom Huddlestone, Adam Johnson, Frank Lampard, Aaron Lennon, James Milner, Scott Parker, Theo Walcott, Shaun Wright-Phillips.

Forwards: Darren Bent, Peter Crouch, Jermain Defoe, Emile Heskey, Wayne Rooney.

 
 
 

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