Date: 14th November 2012 at 2:02pm
Written by:

For someone who has backed Steven Caulker as a long term England defender, his probable debut against Sweden gives me genuine pleasure.

Aside from watching him on occasions for the clubs academy, I also took the time to see him whilst on loan with Yeovil and Bristol City and also spoke to their fans who all raved about his quality, maturity and leadership for someone so young. I remember asking for his autograph with my them 8 year old son as he left the pitch after losing an FA cup game to a then non league Oxford Utd, only for the pen not to work. To his credit, he tried several times before it finally worked, earning my son a cherished signature and Caulker my utmost respect.

Last season, Caulker excelled for both Swansea and international football with the U-21s and Olympic teams. Initially I have no doubt that he was picked more as a squad player for all those teams, yet quickly it became evident that he was the best in his position and would we bet against his retention in the Spurs side, even when we see Kaboul and BAE return to fitness?

On a night that Steven Gerrard will pick up his 100th international cap, and Caulker pick up his first, I fully expect great things for him, for both club and country. whilst predicting his leading his country and reaching 100 caps seems highly premature, such is Caulker’s ever improving quality, maturity and leadership, would we really bet against him achieving one or even both feats???