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Shilton: Fabio should try out Foster

25 Mar 2009 08:00:00

Shilton: Fabio should try out Foster

England legend Peter Shilton hopes Ben Foster will be given the chance to stake his claim for the number one jersey ahead of the World Cup.While veteran Portsmouth keeper David James is currently the Italian coach's first choice, Manchester United understudy Foster has, along with West Ham's Robert Green, been called up for the friendly against Slovakia and World Cup qualifier with Ukraine at Wembley.Foster, 25, has been almost permanently injured since Capello replaced Steve McClaren 15 months ago, and has only one England cap.However, a man-of-the-match performance in United's Carling Cup final win over Tottenham shot him back to prominence.Shilton - who was capped 125 times and reached the semi-finals of the 1990 World Cup - hopes Foster will grab his chance with both hands."I am hoping there is going to be a challenge," said Shilton, who was speaking at an event organised by England team sponsors, Nationwide Building Society."I would like to see a young goalkeeper now in the next few games and for next season really start to put some pressure on the England goalkeeping spot."Shilton added: "David James has always been a terrifically-gifted goalkeeper, but lost his place because of making errors on a regular basis for England."So although he is our most experienced goalkeeper, you can't really put your cards totally on David."It is very interesting to see Ben Foster getting over his injury."He had a big chance in a big game and performed exceptionally well for Manchester United in the Carling Cup final."He is somebody who has always looked the part, but still has a lot to prove."Green has also been very consistent this year, and the position is still very much in the balance."While Shilton remains England's record capped international, the 59-year-old admits there is a tinge of regret his total was not higher.In the early 1970s, Shilton was in direct competition with Liverpool's Ray Clemence, now England goalkeeping coach, and Sir Alf Ramsey decided to alternate between the two.Current England midfielder David Beckham is on the verge of a record 109th cap for an outfield players, and could close in on Shilton's mark should the 33-year-old play past the next World Cup."I was really pleased and honoured to have achieved 125 caps, but when you look back, there was the situation with Ray Clemence," Shilton said."However, in fairness when Bobby Robson took over, he picked me for eight years. Had it been the other way round, maybe Ray would have got 100-odd caps."When I decided to retire, although I was nearly 41, I got the whisper Graham Taylor would like me to continue playing."I just wanted to finish at the top, and when you get to a certain age, whatever you do wrong, it is then to do with your age, they say 'oh, he is too old'. I wanted to go out with some dignity, and did it after a major tournament."But there is the possibility I could have gotten a lot more caps, and the nearer David Beckham gets to my record, then maybe I will wish I had a few more."


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