Moose backs Hammers trio

talkSPORT pundit and West Ham United fan Ian 'Moose' Abrahams believes three Hammers should be named in England's 2010 FIFA World Cup squad.

Moose, who is a regular visitor to the Boleyn Ground Press Box on matchdays, has championed the cause of Robert Green, Matthew Upson and Scott Parker to be included by manager Fabio Capello.

The popular radio presenter also picked the Netherlands as his favourites to win the tournament before taking to the hallowed turf to play in a charity match.


"Three West Ham players should be in the squad - Robert Green, Matthew Upson and Scott Parker - but I think only two will be," he told WHUTV.

"I think Greeny, the other night against Mexico, secured his place as No1, if there was any doubt and there never was in my mind. Although he didn't play the other night, I thought it was a good game to miss, because England were awful. I don't think Gareth Barry will be fit for the first or second game, so I would take Scott Parker.

"I watch Scott every week and he can do it all - he can be defensive, he can be disciplined and he can go forward. I think if you played Scott behind Frank Lampard and Steven Gerrard and Scott could sit and break up the play. The climate in South Africa is suited to him, too."

As a man who is never shy to share his opinion, Moose was happy to tell WHUTV who he thinks will lift the World Cup in Johannesburg on 11 July.

"I'd love to see England win the World Cup, as I've never seen in my lifetime. People tell me about 1966 and it would be a great fillip for the game. Are we going to win the World Cup? No. I think you've got to be spectacularly optimistic to say so. I'll be honest about it.

"Brazil are better than us, Spain the European champions will be hard to beat. Cesc Fabregas is not an automatic starter for them and he'd walk into the England team and up front they have got David Villa and Fernando Torres and Andres Iniesta and Xabi Alonso behind.

"Argentina are a decent side. People are writing them off because of the way they qualified but they did qualify. We saw what Diego Milito can do the other day [in the UEFA Champions League final] and any team that has got Lionel Messi and Carlos Tevez has a chance.

"Holland are going to be very strong. People aren't really talking about Holland but Robin van Persie is fit, he hardly played last season for Arsenal and he's an absolute quality player.

"I think it'll be one of those four and England will reach the quarter-finals and come home. If I had to pick one it would be Holland."

While Moose is at home in a radio studio or the Press Box, he is less happy in a football kit and boots on the pitch, as was shown by his display in the aforementioned charity match.

Playing at right-back, he failed to shine in a 6-6 draw before missing a crucial spot-kick in the penalty shoot-out, but still confessed to thoroughly enjoying the experience.

"Basically my uncle is one of the sponsors and we got the use of the pitch at the end of the season, which was brilliant of West Ham. Rather than just use it for a kick-around, we have organised a charity game.

"We've got a few ex-players to come along - Don Hutchison, Marc Bircham and Matt Lockwood - as well as [former England cricketer and talkSPORT colleague] Darren Gough, who apparently used to play for Barnsley, and Tristan Gemmill from Casualty.

"The One Family charity is to help families who have been affected by terrorism in Israel to help them to put their lives back in order and give them a better life going on.

"It's a big pitch. When you watch from up in the Press Box you don't realise just how big it is. I've played here two-or-three times before and it's wonderful. It's every boy's ambition to get on the pitch, so to play on it is fantastic.

"I had a big portion of chips from the chippy around the corner to prepare, which is my normal matchday experience!"