Ridgewell encourages Capello
Defender Liam Ridgewell would welcome a watchful eye from Fabio Capello at St Andrews.
Last Updated: 14/02/10 4:10pm
Defender Liam Ridgewell would welcome a watchful eye from Fabio Capello as Birmingham's season continues to reach new heights.
Despite suffering defeat at West Ham last weekend, Birmingham booked their place in the FA Cup quarter-finals with a 2-1 victory at Derby on Saturday, with Ridgewell grabbing the winning goal.
With long-term injuries to Bolton centre-half Gary Cahill, who was tipped for a place in national team boss Capello's World Cup squad, and Ashley Cole, the door is open for fringe players to stake a claim for this summer.
Conceding just 26 goals in the league, only four more than leaders Chelsea's total, Ridgewell has encouraged Capello to take a trip to St Andrews where he believes there are one or two defenders who are worthy of international football.
"Cahill had a chance of going to the World Cup and, with Ashley Cole injured as well, it certainly gives our players a chance," said the 25-year-old, who has refused to rule himself out of the frame.
"There are a lot of centre-halves out there who will want to go to the World Cup and they've got to try their best to get in there.
"It will be hard for Roger Johnson and Scott Dann to sneak a place because they've not had much Premier League experience but, if they continue their current form, then they might push for the squad one day.
"I've been playing centre-half and left-back as well and hopefully I've shown - like Joleon Lescott - that I can one day play for England as well.
"Capello has obviously got to look elsewhere with people getting injured - so hopefully he will come and watch myself and others in action."
With the team well placed in eighth position in the Premier League, their cup run is an added bonus to a surprisingly successful season back in the top flight.
Ridgewell's contract is set to expire in the summer, but with the team performing so well, he doesn't expect there to be any problems with negotiations in the coming weeks.
"I've had a brief discussion about the contract and we are looking to press on. I want to get it done and dusted," he said.
"Hopefully we can get it kicked on in the next few weeks. I certainly don't want to leave it until the end of the season."
Alex McLeish's men were forced to come from behind at Pride Park, where Scott Dann cancelled out James McEveley's opener before Ridgewell grabbed the injury-time winner, and the former Aston Villa man is relieved to have progressed.
"The big teams don't play well but still get the results and we took a leaf out of their book," said Ridgewell.
"It was a difficult day. Derby are a good side, they've had good results lately and, once they get in front, they are difficult to break down. We got two set pieces, took advantage and are grateful to get the win.
"I got a few goals when I was at Villa. I got six in one season from going up for free-kicks and corners and had a bit of a dry patch last season.
"I've just kept on trying to get on the end of the ball when it comes into the box and to try and get it on target and into the net.
"Goals from other areas are priceless because you can't just rely on the centre-forwards all of the time.
"Obviously, they have got to get their fair share but everyone else has got to chip in. I've got three this season and hopefully I can get many more."