Can Milner Make Step Up to Full England Squad?

James Milner’s next challenge is to play well enough for Newcastle that he makes it into the full England squad.


James Milner – can he make jump into full England squad?

Well at least that’s what his manager Kevin Keegan thinks. Milner has a massive 36 caps for the England Under-21 side and even England Captain Steven Taylor is not too far behind with 25 caps.

Kevin has challenged the 22 year-old winger to start making the England full squad having seen old team mates Ashley Young, Gabriel Agbonlahor and David Bentley all being called up for the full side. Young and Bentley both played in Capello’s first game in charge of England against Switzerland.

Keegan told Newcastle World TV today:

“You have to remember he’s still young,” “Just because he has got a lot of experience and played a lot of games you can’t hide the fact that he’s still got another year to play at under-21 level.”

“But the challenge for James, and we have talked about this with him, is to make that jump into the full squad.” “He has played enough games with the under-21s but it would be great to go and win something with them maybe next year.”

“I’m sure he wants to do that and they’ve got a chance because Stuart Pearce has got a great squad.”

James Milner’s main priority however remains Newcastle United and he knows that his performances at club level will determine whether he becomes a full international.

Kevin continued:

“His bread and butter is here and there’s still a lot of improvement left in him,” “He’s a very good player now but he can improve and he knows that.”

“The one thing you know with him is that he will work hard at it and he will listen.” “Some players you have to kick up the backside, but you don’t have to do that with James.

“And that’s why the fans like him so much here.”

James has been a consistent player for us in the last season or so, and we’ll just have to wait and see how much better he can get. But there’s lots of competition on the wings in the full England squad right now, and it will not be easy for James to make the step up.

What do you think?

Comments welcome.

55 comments so far

  • hanzemre

    Feb 21, 2008 at 12:11 PM

    Comment #1

    yeah he can with more balls into the box

  • Luke

    Feb 21, 2008 at 12:29 PM

    Comment #2

    I have a lot of faith in milner, but someone stick him in the corner and tell him to practise his crossing.

  • John

    Feb 21, 2008 at 1:14 PM

    Comment #3

    The reason he has’nt been called up is quite simple..He’s not good enough .

  • Jimmie

    Feb 21, 2008 at 1:19 PM

    Comment #4

    Hes young and still learns. Hes time will come..

  • Gloryhunter

    Feb 21, 2008 at 1:24 PM

    Comment #5

    …. don’t care

  • John

    Feb 21, 2008 at 1:25 PM

    Comment #6

    he does’nt have the pace to be a top top player… He’s crosssing is’nt good enough either…

  • Paul P

    Feb 21, 2008 at 1:26 PM

    Comment #7

    2 probelms with james, a. like everyone says he can not cross a ball. 2 when he beats a man, instead of bombing on and trying to get a cross in, he will check back and try and beat him again when he has already beat him. it sickens me off when he does that. if he can learn to get past a man, concentrate on his crossing then he may get in, at present, there are other wingers in the premiership which offer more than james.

  • Marty

    Feb 21, 2008 at 1:31 PM

    Comment #8

    Luke,i agree with sending him to a corner n making him send in crosses as it seems pointless to have a winger that works his ass off but can`t cross his legs!!!
    Dont think he is good enough to get into full squad,he will have to step up several notches to lace bentleys boots……..

  • scott 9

    Feb 21, 2008 at 1:32 PM

    Comment #9

    he aint good enough yet but hopefully in a few years time and why does everyone go on about his pace hes a quick player hes not slow at all

  • Greek-toon

    Feb 21, 2008 at 1:35 PM

    Comment #10

    Gazza has been sectioned under the mental health act

  • Hadrian

    Feb 21, 2008 at 1:43 PM

    Comment #11

    Pearce will help push milner into the england squad , but i think milners capellos kind of player anyway , he just needs to work on his final delivery .

  • Leo*

    Feb 21, 2008 at 2:00 PM

    Comment #12

    hard worker, and hasnt put much of a foot wrong that i can remember, and the whole falasy that he cant cross, its not true, its the press lads, i also nearly believed it as well.

    he just needs to be told to get to that by line more often and put it across, no one seems to want to do that at newcastle, when we do strangely we have got goals!

  • nightfall

    Feb 21, 2008 at 2:13 PM

    Comment #13

    what do you think:

    dunne – 6m
    carrick – 11m
    ribery – emre+15m
    barbatov – 20m
    and perhaps song from arsenal…we need another young, quality CM..and he’ll be free in summer

    and sell: smith, butt, barton, shola, viduka, carr, rozehnal, emre, and perhaps geremi & cacapa! and add youngsters to our fist team squad: carroll, kadar, bohang, lualua, tozer, zamblera, edgar, goodsmark,…,…

    so our team would be:

    beye/ramage dunne/edgar faye/taylor enrique/kadar
    milner/lualua carrick/song ribery/bohang zog/duff
    owen/martins berbatov/carroll

    + forster, zamblera, tozer, goodsmark,…

    faye and edgar can also play as FBs, lualua and zog as CMs nad bohang as a winger…

    bayern wants emre and you never know..ribery might come…afterall he went to bayern, although they weren’t in CL…and EPL is a challenge for every player…

  • YongMalaysia

    Feb 21, 2008 at 2:20 PM

    Comment #14

    he is good but stil need to practise on passing and crossing…

  • ende

    Feb 21, 2008 at 2:27 PM

    Comment #15

    nightfall, what’s any of that got to do with milner making full squad at england??

  • Obafan

    Feb 21, 2008 at 2:48 PM

    Comment #16

    3 words:

    No f***cking way!!!!

    He is overrated and does not have any intelligence at all. I just can’t understand the fact that he plays most of the NUFC games. Luckely we have Beye behind him otherwise our right wing would be so weak (probably the weakest of the entire EPL).

  • Obafan

    Feb 21, 2008 at 2:51 PM

    Comment #17

    nightfall – I think you really underestimate Bayern; why on Earth would they let Ribery leave to another club? We live above our standard at present. I think it will be very difficult to attract players in the summer. Why?

    1. what a chaos it has been this season; no player wants to be involved in such a mess
    2. if we stick with bad attitude guys (Barton, Smith) lots of players will turn us down cause they won’t play with these kind of idiots.
    3. no european football and perhaps just no relegation. Not attractive to join tho’.


  • milner fan

    Feb 21, 2008 at 2:51 PM

    Comment #18

    nightfall, i think your commenting on the article lol. This is about milner not what players you think are best for the club

  • wsq

    Feb 21, 2008 at 3:27 PM

    Comment #19

    rather have bently or someone with pace

  • Matthew Tom

    Feb 21, 2008 at 3:34 PM

    Comment #20

    Milner is currently behind a number of players for a right wing position with England:

    David Bentley
    David Beckham
    Shaun Wright-Phillips
    Aaron Lennon
    Steven Gerrard (sometimes)

    I like Milner a lot, but I think we’d all rather have one of these players instead. Milner is a good player, very fit and certainly talented, but not quick enough and not good enough at crossing for me at the moment.

    Would love to see him improve to challenge this lot though!

  • nightfall

    Feb 21, 2008 at 3:34 PM

    Comment #21

    ribery is 24 and already played for 10 different i guess he’s the type of person who loves challenges…
    oh and obafan..i’ve written smith and barton should be sold…and 8 other players…

    as for milner…i’ve told many times i think he’s the best player we have…he’s talented and his attitude is simply superb…he could do wonders for this club..if he had better players around him…


    Feb 21, 2008 at 4:18 PM

    Comment #22

    no, thats why he is stuck in the under 21s

  • milner fan

    Feb 21, 2008 at 4:36 PM

    Comment #23

    i think he could make the cut after he improves his gameplay. He can beat players but doesnt seem to want to cross it once he gets past them. I highly rate him as a player. I think he will improve for next season.

  • tommyy

    Feb 21, 2008 at 4:40 PM

    Comment #24

    I have a very strong and horrific feeling that both Smith and Butt will be starting against Man U.

    About Milner, of course he can cross, any professional footballer can cross. He’s just not gettin wide enough to put them in a bit deeper.

  • american pie

    Feb 21, 2008 at 4:44 PM

    Comment #25

    competition +
    = he is overlooked

    and who says he can’t cross. so many goals have come from his assists. the problem is there is no one there to finish so all his work doesn’t count until someone scores them

  • Chicken

    Feb 21, 2008 at 4:51 PM

    Comment #26

    Obafan = tosser.

    It’s great when you come on here and read another fan slating the one player who you know is going to give everything he’s got whenever he puts on the black and white stripes.


    Feb 21, 2008 at 5:01 PM

    Comment #27

    Obafan why do people like you buy this crap that milner cant run or cross
    He is very fast and the reason we dont score more off his crosses is because our strikers movement, (owen aside) is shit and as much as a fan of his that includes martins

  • Tom_Toon

    Feb 21, 2008 at 5:34 PM

    Comment #28

    To the title: No

    Cant cross and lets face it hes not really that fast.

  • Chicken

    Feb 21, 2008 at 6:00 PM

    Comment #29

    Tom_Toon – you wouldn’t know a decent cross if it jumped up and bit you on the arse – back to the sopcast little boy. Apparently it’s Racing Bummers v Dynamo Felching tonight – should be right up your steet 😉

  • Tom_Toon

    Feb 21, 2008 at 6:09 PM

    Comment #30

    Your mature, silly mug.

  • Gordon

    Feb 21, 2008 at 6:21 PM

    Comment #31

    Milner: lots of effort, a lot less quality

    He’s a Villa/Everton/Spurs level player.

    Fact: You’ll never see the likes of Arsenal, Man U or Chelsea bidding for him.

  • Chicken

    Feb 21, 2008 at 6:21 PM

    Comment #32

    What about it, TT?

  • Chicken

    Feb 21, 2008 at 6:30 PM

    Comment #33

    Gordon – there’s nothing wrong with that though, is there?

    All 3 of those teams are better than us and, unless I’m mistaken, the last player we had that one of the big 3 went in for was Andy Cole.

  • Chicken

    Feb 21, 2008 at 6:32 PM

    Comment #34

    Fact: The Earth is round.

    Not a Fact: You’ll never see the likes of Arsenal, Man U or Chelsea bidding for him (Milner).

  • Swede1891

    Feb 21, 2008 at 6:36 PM

    Comment #35 wouldnt know a breast from a football cause you never touched either..(no offense:)) Agree with Obafan and Tom_Toon..He´s just not good enough..No split vision..poor passing, crossing etc …

  • Tom_Toon

    Feb 21, 2008 at 6:41 PM

    Comment #36

    I think i can cross better than Milner and my sport is badminton although Darren Bent beat me at it 🙁

  • Leo*

    Feb 21, 2008 at 6:42 PM

    Comment #37

    actually the earth is not round, its spherical haha to be pedantic

  • Chicken

    Feb 21, 2008 at 6:59 PM

    Comment #38

    Leo – I did actually think that when I wrote it – just thought it was probably a few syllables too many for those that are still studying for their GCSE’s.

  • Chicken

    Feb 21, 2008 at 7:04 PM

    Comment #39

    Swede1891 – if you blindfolded me and rubbed a football in my face and then rubbed a breast in my face, I’m pretty sure I could tell the difference (unless it was Jordan pre-op).

    And wtf is split vision?

    Great joke by the way. Do you write all your own stuff?


    Feb 21, 2008 at 7:06 PM

    Comment #40

    Tom_toon how many matches have you watched of milners his crossing is nowhere near as bad a you make out


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