Ben Foster expressed his disappointment with the goalkeeping situation at Old Trafford with comments he made after playing for England in Saturday’s 1-0 defeat to Brazil.
Foster said “I’m third choice for United yet I’m playing for my country, it’s very disheartening not even to be on the bench, but I can’t go saying ‘I want to leave’ or anything like that.”
The fact is that Foster had an extended run of games at the start of the season and had a glorious opportunity to prove to Alex Ferguson that he he is the natural successor to Edwin Van der Sar, but he blew it.
He also went on to say “I thought I started off well but then there was a period of two or three games where I made a few mistakes, but they were the only ones I made really and I was disappointed to find myself out of the team.” I assume he might be referring to the Man City and Sunderland games.
Err not sure about that, what about the mistake that cost United the Charity Shield at the start of the season, or Arshavin’s goal from 30 yards out that he pushed into the roof of the net at Old Trafford in August
The fact of the matter is that Foster looked anything but secure and more than played his part in making the Man United backline look unsure and it was blatently obvious that the back four lacked confidence in him.
It was no surprise to see Van der Sar back in the team as soon as he was fit, the only surprise was that Ferguson didn’t throw Tomasz Kuszczak in while he waited for the Dutchman to return such was the performances of Foster.
Foster’s remark – “that he is playing for his country” – can be easily explained as well, you’re only there as we have no one else, we have a shortage of reliable goalkeepers in this country and you are one of few who is fit and available at the moment. You’re not there on merit, thats for sure.
Foster is 26 now and should be coming into his prime, he arrived at Manchester United in 2005 as an exciting prospect but has so far failed to kick on and improve, he had a season long loan at Watford early after signing for United where he didn’t exactly set the World on fire either, he did manage to join that elite club of conceding from the opposite goalkeeper in his time there though.
With David James injured, Rob Green far from convincing, you have only Foster, Robinson, Hart or Kirkland as alternatives to pick from really. If James dosen’t make South Africa, England are really struggling. Joe Hart looks promising but is he ready to go to the World Cup? Foster, Green and Robinson all are error prone and Kirkland probably has too many fitness issues for Capello’s liking.
There is a massive chance there for Ben Foster with the weakness in the goalkeeping position, it is up to him to prove us wrong and show he up to the task.