MURPHY'S DELIGHT AT ENGLAND CALL
By Peter O`Rourke
Last Updated: 01/01/70 1:00am
The 24-year-old former Crewe man was one of seven Reds players named in Sven-Goran Eriksson's 25-man squad for the crucial qualifiers.
Murphy was tipped to make the breakthrough into the international set-up last season as he played an instrumental role in Liverpool's treble success last term, but it never came to now and the player admitted he was delighted at the news of being selected.
"I'm thrilled at the news," said Murphy. "It came as a shock and it was our manager Gerard Houllier who rang me to tell me I was in.
"I must admit it is unexpected because it's so early in the season and if it was going to happened I felt it may have come along once the England manager had been given the chance to see everyone's form.
"I've had calls from a lot of the Liverpool lads saying 'well done' and in particular Steven Gerrard, who is my club room-mate. Maybe we will end up as room-mates for England now.
"What is good is that there are so many Liverpool players in the squad and they will be able to help me settle in.
"I don't really know what will happen now or whether I will get a chance to play. "But at the moment I am just enjoying the fact that I am in the squad for the first time."
Meawhile, Eriksson will hope that all seven of the Liverpool players will come through unscathed from Monday's Premiership clash with Bolton to take their place in the squad.
The Swede saw England captain David Beckham pick up a groin injury in Manchester United's draw with Aston Villa even though he should be fit to play against Germany and he will hope that no Liverpool players pick up any injuries.
Murphy, Michael Owen, Emile Heskey, Robbie Fowler, Steve Gerrard, Nick Barmby, and Jamie Carragher were all named in Eriksson's squad on Sunday and all are set to be involved against Bolton and Eriksson will be keen to see Gerrard prove his fitness ahead of the game in Munich.