Parker stakes England claim
Scott Parker is staking his claim for the England squad by stating he can fill Gareth Barry's shoes.
By Mike Barton
Last Updated: 11/05/10 10:54am
Scott Parker is staking his claim for a place in Fabio Capello's England squad by stating he can fill the vacant role of Gareth Barry should he not make the cut.
Manchester City midfielder Barry is understood to be a serious doubt to be selected by Capello after injuring his ankle against Tottenham at the start of the month.
Parker, who has been in inspired form in leading West Ham out of relegation trouble and keeping the side in the Premier League, is one of many hopefuls to fill the void left by Barry, with Tom Huddlestone and Owen Hargreaves also jostling for a place in the 30-man preliminary squad.
"It would be the ultimate way for me to finish the season if I was to be called into the England squad," said Parker, who has not been capped since England were defeated in Croatia in a European Championship qualifier in 2006.
"It is every player's dream to be involved at the World Cup. It is the pinnacle of your career.
"If you would have asked me two weeks ago if I expected to be in the squad I would have probably had a different answer, but Gareth is struggling with his injury so it makes my chances a bit better."
The 29-year-old was announced as the Hammers' Player of the Year for the second season running after some outstanding performances as vice-captain of the side.
His form at Upton Park has led him to become linked with a move elsewhere, despite owner David Sullivan announcing that he was the one player who was priceless to the club and would not be sold.
Parker, however, was more focused on the immediate future, announcing that despite his inexperience at international level, he did not know what was ahead.
"I am pleased with my form but I just need to keep my fingers crossed," Parker added.
"If I can get in the squad of 30 and impress Fabio Capello, you never know what might happen."