Darren Bent eyes England recall
The Sunderland striker has scored in both of his new club's opening games of the season and believes he could boost his chances of securing a place in Fabio Capello's plans if he hits the target again this weekend when Blackburn visit the Stadium of Light. The 25-year-old Bent is hoping his early-season form will enable him to add to his four England caps, the last of which was earned in November 2008 as a substitute in the 2-1 win over Germany in Berlin. England will play a friendly against Slovenia on Saturday, Sept 5 and then host Croatia the following Wednesday and Bent will use the prospect of featuring in Capello's squad as an extra incentive in the Premier League this Saturday. "If I can get another goal against Blackburn, that would just top things off for me and maybe it would give me a chance of an England shout," said Bent, who was prolific at Under-21 level with nine goals in 14 outings but is yet to get off the mark at senior level. "I don't want to think too much about it but, if I play regularly for Sunderland and get goals and we push up the league, who knows, there might be something for me with England." Bent, the club-record £10 million signing from Tottenham, celebrated his Sunderland debut with the winning goal at Bolton last weekend and put Steve Bruce's side ahead in the 3-1 defeat by Chelsea on Tuesday night. "I was disappointed with the Chelsea result," Bent added. "The team played really, really well and we gave it our all but it just wasn't meant to be. "Having said that, I don't think there are too many teams out there who could live with Chelsea. I thought that for a good hour or 70 minutes we gave it a go, but at the end of the day we just weren't good enough. "As a forward, it was great to get a goal against them but you want the team to win and you want to make the fans happy." Bent continued: "We've got another important game against Blackburn at the weekend and I'm sure that, if we rest our bones and get the injured players back fit, there's no reason why we can't go on and get another three points. "We've certainly got the players to do that. Blackburn had a bad result at the weekend against Manchester City and, even though we lost to Chelsea, the boys are still confident we can do really well." Sunderland have fitness concerns over winger Steed Malbranque (ankle) and Lee Cattermole (back) who are rated as doubtful for the Blackburn game but Lorik Cana should play despite suffering a suspected broken hand against Chelsea.
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