The extracts on this page are taken from selected national newspapers. The views expressed here do not necessarily reflect the views of Manchester United.
Nev wants elite refs for top clashes
Gary Neville has called for the introduction of an elite pool of referees to officiate in the biggest matches after denouncing the number of high-profile errors being made this season. Neville believes that inexperienced referees should not be allowed to take charge of the big games until they have “earned” the right to do so and has urged the authorities to appoint a select group to officiate in those matches with the most at stake. The defender’s comments are likely to provoke more controversy coming only four days after Sir Alex Ferguson was fined £20,000 and given a touchline ban for his outspoken attack on Alan Wiley.
James Ducker, The Times
Writing for The Telegraph, Alan Hansen believes Michael Owen's England record should put him among the current striking candidates, saying: “If you are looking for somebody to score in a World Cup quarter-final, who you would be 90 per cent certain of putting away a chance, you would have to say Owen is a better bet than any of them.”
Wayne Rooney is being tipped for the England captaincy after his mature display in England's loss to Brazil. Matt Barlow of The Daily Mail writes: “Rooney answered Capello’s call and refused to let his head drop as they came up short against a team ranked the best in the world. England’s newest captain proved capable in the role and it will surely not be the last time he leads out his country."
A number of newspapers have commented on Ben Foster’s situation in reference to England’s goalkeeping dilemma. The United stopper said he was surprised to be called up for England for their recent friendly with Brazil because of his lack of regular action at Old Trafford.