Murphy admits England fears
By Tom Adams
Last Updated: 01/01/70 1:00am
Danny Murphy is resigned to the fact that only injuries could see him make the World Cup.Charlton star Danny Murphy says he is resigned to the fact that only a spate of injuries in the England squad would allow him to make the World Cup finals.
The former Liverpool midfielder has been in sterling form so far this season for The Addicks and had been widely tipped to add to his nine caps in the recent qualifiers against Austria and Poland.
However, Sven Goran Eriksson's decision not to include him in the squad, even after a glowing reference from assistant Tord Grip, has left the 28-year-old realistic about his international prospects.
Despite Murphy's confidence that he is currently one of The Premiership's in-form players, the star admits that not being at a bigger club means only injuries to the likes of Steven Gerrard and Frank Lampard could see him travel to Germany in the summer.
"If you play for a big club you play big games and it's understandable why the manager picks players from a few select clubs," Murphy told the Daily Mail.
"You can't tell me that if Darren Bent had scored seven goals for Liverpool and not Charlton that he wouldn't have played alongside Michael Owen when Wayne Rooney was suspended in the Austria game.
"But, if I'm honest, I think I've been performing better than some of the people in that squad.
"Over a period of 12-18 months maybe they have been more consistent but I know how it works at international level.
"Unless there are two or three - not one - serious injuries to the midfield area I don't think I have a chance of making the World Cup squad.
"That's the only way it would happen and it would have to be some pretty serious players.
"Sven knows what I'm about, he knows what I can do, well that's what I'm hoping anyway."
Murphy, who saw his 2002 World Cup dream ended by injury, is well aware that The Three Lions possess some of the finest midfield talent to grace the world stage.
David Beckham, Frank Lampard and Steven Gerrard have all been named on the short list for European Footballer of the Year, and, praising the qualities of the trio, Murphy believes he is worth a spot on the bench to provide a further option to Eriksson.
"For me, Stevie has the lot. If you told him to sacrifice himself and play the holding role he would, but Sven's got to tell him that," Murphy continued.
"Lampard is probably the best attacking midfielder in the world at the moment, his goal ratio is unbelievable and his energy is incredible.
"Beckham's end product from his position is beyond criticism.
"His vision and passing are up there with the best.
"He couldn't possibly be left out, but how you fit the three of them into a system is a different debate.
"I would have myself in the squad as a different option, I can play a killer pass and I can change a game with one bit of skill or vision.
"I wouldn't expect to play, but I'd hope to be on the bench."