3 Jun 2009

Ferdinand out of England match

11:36 am on 3 June 2009

The Manchester United defender Rio Ferdinand has been ruled out of England's football squad to face Kazakhstan in a World Cup qualifier in the central Asian republic this weekend.

The England boss Fabio Capello has called up Bolton's Gary Cahill as cover at centre back after Ferdinand failed to recover sufficiently from a recurrence of the calf injury which had kept him out of action for three weeks prior to United's Champions League final defeat to Barcelona.

Capello is already without his first-choice goalkeeper David James for the trip to Kazakhstan and the meeting with Andorra at Wembley next week.

Cahill's call-up came as a surprise with the 23-year-old benefiting from the fact that Everton's Phil Jagielka is currently sidelined by injury.

Cahill is unlikely to start in Kazakhstan with Matthew Upson and Joleon Lescott both available to partner captain John Terry in the centre of defence.

Having won their opening five matches in group six, England can move to the brink of qualifying for next year's finals in South Africa by taking maximum points from the two upcoming qualifiers.