It’s not often a regular 20 goal a season Premier League striker isn’t seen as a regular for the England side, but Darren Bent has bucked the trend with his continued failure to break through on to the international scene.
Since arriving at Sunderland last summer, Bent’s goal scoring record has been nothing short of sensational. The former Tottenham forward has scored an incredible 29 times in just 44 appearances.
But 24 of these goals last season were not enough for Bent to go to South Africa with Fabio Capello’s World Cup squad. It does pose the question of what more Bent can do to persuade the Italian that he is the answer to England’s inevitable problems upfront.
Bent must be praised for his bold decision to leave the comfort of a fashionable club to try and get the games, and goals to persuade Capello he was worthy of a place in the World Cup squad. But unfortunately for Bent, who did everything in his power to get selected, Capello opted for the experience of Emile Heskey instead.
To his credit the Italian did include Bent in his squad for the opening Euro 2012 qualifiers, and the likeable forward responded with a well taken goal in the 3-1 win over Switzerland in Basel. Now after three goals in his last three Premier League games, is Bent sent to be a mainstay in not only the England squad, but the England side as well?
I certainly hope he gets his chance, because he has earned it. The likes of Paul Robinson and Wes Brown retired after been left out of the World Cup squad, but Bent got his head down, and set about forcing his way in to the side.
Given the chance I have no doubt that Bent could become a prolific scorer at international level. He has an instinctive goal-scoring nature. Yes he may require several chances to score goals, but the fact of that matter is that more then often he does find the back of the net.
That sort of quality doesn’t change no matter what level you’re playing at, and in my opinion Bent just need a series of chances to prove himself. The only remaining question is, will he get these chances?