Beattie slams Sven selections

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James Beattie has laid the blame for England's World Cup failure on the lack of strikers selected by Sven Goran Eriksson.

Only four front men, including the hugely inexperienced Theo Walcott, were taken to Germany, and Everton forward Beattie believes the decision to omit Jermain Defoe and Darren Bent was criminal.

"I feel sorry for Jermain Defoe and Darren Bent," Beattie told Sky Sports News.

"To get 20 goals in a Premiership season and not be included in the World Cup was terrible.

"I think Jermain going and being involved with the squad and then being told to go home was a shame again.

"You look at it and maybe England's downfall was a lack of strikers. You've got two names there who were primed and ready to go."

Another man in contention for an England spot was new Everton signing Andy Johnson, and Beattie is looking forward to linking up with the former Crystal Palace ace.

"I think Andy's a great player. He's proved himself at premiership level before and he's a good friend of mine so it's a great addition to the squad," hailed Beattie.

"He's settling in really well and hopefully we can hit it off this season.

"I'm sure the fans will take to him because he's got a great work ethic and he can score goals for fun."

Beattie is hoping to further his own international ambitions by inspiring The Toffees to a successful season.

"I think top six is a definite target for us this year with the signings we've made," he claimed.

"The main focus will be to perform for Everton. If you get your performances right for your club side then hopefully the England stuff will take care of itself."