Football Friends Online – When 90 Mins Is Not EnoughIn praise of Leon Osman - Football Friends Online - When 90 Mins Is Not Enough In praise of Leon Osman - Football Friends Online - When 90 Mins Is Not Enough

In praise of Leon Osman

In the Twitter storm in the wake of the extra players called up to the England squad yesterday, there was one player who’s name was most touted under the “should have been called up”.

That man was Swansea’s flying winger Lloyd Dyer who has enjoyed a storming start to the season with two goals in three games and a string of superb performances.

This too on the back of a superb last seasons at the Liberty Stadium as he stepped up from the Championship to the Premier League with aplomb, much like the club as a whole.

While the call ups of Raheem Sterling and Adam Llallana to cover the winger positions in the squad had perfectly valid reasons (and besides Twitter-folk, its not your job to choose the England squad so get over it), the Dyer-backers did have a point.

More top flight experience, better form in the current season and so on are very valid reasons also.

However, there is one another name which has been looked even more so and that name is Leon Osman at Everton.

Osman is now 31 and it is a huge miscarriage of justice that he has never even been included in a provisional England squad given how integral he has been to the Toffees ever since his debut in 2004.

Statistics very rarely tell the story with midfielder as 33 goals in 251 games rightly shows, but the 251 games is rather telling itself as that’s 35 games a season and that’s what Osman does so well.

He is consistently a 7/10 player that gives his all in every game he plays and is not short on quality either providing good ammunition for his forwards and fellow midfielders at Goodison throughout his career at the club.

Perhaps the problem has been two-fold; firstly he could be suffering from being a victim of his own ability to play in a number of positions like his club teammate Phil Neville suffered from. Osman can operate on the wing, behind a main striker and in central midfield which, as was the case with Neville, made him something of a jack of all trades that didn’t give him a true chance to shine.

A second explanation could be, in an England team that has often been lacking pace in midfield for the last decade, quick wingers have been a necessity and, despite all of his qualities, pace is not one thing Osman possesses.

All in all however, a career without an England call up or even a cap at underage levels is dreadfully sad for a player of Osman’s, not only quality, but consistency of quality too.  

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