Gus Poyet has urged Sunderland winger Adam Johnson to catch England manager Roy Hodgson's eye at Wembley this weekend.
Hodgson is pondering who will make his 30-man squad for this summer's World Cup in Brazil - but there is an opportunity on the wings as Arsenal forward Theo Walcott's hopes have been wrecked by injury.
Johnson will take centre stage against his former club Manchester City in Sunday's Capital One Cup final, which is live on Sky Sports 1HD, and will be looking to continue his fine recent form which has seen him score five goals.
Poyet believes a fine display from Johnson against Manuel Pellegrini's men would prove to Hodgson he can perform when it matters most.
The Sunderland boss told the Evening Chronicle: "Normally these games are the ones that the managers of the national teams look at most.
"You need to perform because that's what you expect at the World Cup.
"These are big games to play in. England are playing Uruguay and Italy in the World Cup and the players in Adam's position need to be at a good level against the best teams in the league."
Poyet added: "If he gets called up, it will be a big surprise and a big opportunity.
"If Theo Walcott was fit, you would have known most of the 23 for the World Cup - but now it's an extra opportunity which gives him the incentive to perform."
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