Steven Gerrard gets his wish and will play in his preferred spot today against Kazakhstan, but not after a dressing down from Fabio Capello that he will not tolerate players pining for their favorite positions.
So which is it? Do players play where you want, Fabio? Or do they play where they want?
Gerrard whined after England's 4-1 over Croatia that he'd played in his favorite center attacking mid spot only handful of times in his international career. Capello prefers Frank Lampard there and Lampard was stupendous against Croatia. It's a nice problem for Capello to have, and perhaps his strategy will play in his favor.
Has Gerrard earned this nod? Sure. And Lampard is no slouch either.
No the real winner is Capello who has put his foot down and finally addressed a problem he could not allow to linger longer. From the Independent:
Either Lampard, aged 30, and the 28-year-old Gerrard, prove finally that their brains do not automatically turn to shredded wheat whenever they simultaneously pull on the shirts of their nation or they go their separate ways. One is to the wasteland of unfulfilled potential – the other is to some justification of their vast reputations, to which Lampard did add, let us be fair, a little flesh in Gerrard's absence during the impressive victory over Croatia in Zagreb last month.
Says it all.