Writer: Mikey Delap
Date:Sunday August 8 2010
I must admit I was totally shocked when I heard the news that Paul Robinson was retiring from international football. Especially coming a few hours after he was picked in the England squad for the upcoming friendly.
There could be a number of reasons for this but I would suspect, personally and rather cynically, that this is Robbo's way of sticking two fingers up to Fabio for months of neglect and underrating of his performances.
It WAS a mistake by Capello not to take Paul Robinson to the World Cup in the summer. Manager's are supposed to take players who are able and on form, Robinson was both and alongside Manchester City's Joe Hart was the Premier League's best English goalkeeper of last season.
I would also, almost bitterly, declare that if Robinson had still been at a high profile club like Spurs last season, that he would have been a shoe in for the number one shirt. But because he was at an unfashionable club like ours, he was overlooked.
However, regardless of whatever speculation everyone may like to throw out there - Robinson's decision is only a bonus for Blackburn Rovers.
Robinson will now focus 100% on his club side and will not risk overexerting himself through travel to London every time we have a friendly against Georgia Under 18s. Since he has been at Ewood Park he has improved steadily from shaky at first to slimmer but erratic and now to where we stand at present... a reliable goalkeeper with confidence and agility.
This might seem slightly outlandish to say right now but in a few months to a year time, England will be missing Robinson a lot more than Robinson will miss England. Especially given the dearth of goalkeeping talent available to the national manager at this time.
Make no mistake, Robbo is better now than he has ever been, not just at Rovers but at White Hart Lane or Elland Road.
He will always be remembered in an England jersey for his bobble kick catastrophe in Croatia, but at Rovers he will always be England's number one.
Well done Paul Robinson.
Date:Sunday August 8 2010
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