Team GB should have national quotas, says Martin Keown
Team GB can't live up to its name without including players from all four home nations within its ranks, according to Martin Keown.
Football legend Martin Keown getting in the sporting spirit at BT House (30.07.12)
The former England and Arsenal defender told MSN that Stuart Pearce should have been forced to include footballers from England, Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland.
Such a policy could actually have benefitted the side by bringing a broader range of approaches, he added.
"There are too many English players involved" Keown said in an interview at BT House in London. "We have three overage players, so we should have had three players from each nation, because I think there's a lot to be learned from one another."
Great Britain go in to their final group game against Uruguay on Wednesday evening looking to avoid defeat in order to progress to the knockout stages, following a 1-1 draw against Senegal and a 3-1 victory over the UAE.
Though the Scottish, Welsh and Northern Irish Football Associations have previously made it clear that they oppose a combined 'TeamGB', for fear of compromising their own national sides, they were prevented from blocking players from participating. However the non-English contingent is made up of just five Welshmen.
Keown added: "The Welsh players have been magnificent; but I would've liked to have seen some Irish bodies in there. We talk about the British Lions, and it's the characters you remember, and the personalities, and I know for one that there's plenty of personality in the Irish and Scottish and it's a shame they weren't involved."
The veteran centre-back, capped times 43 times for England, also questioned the exclusion of David Beckham by head coach Stuart Pearce, revealing that he would have selected the former England skipper.
"Olympic football is a little bit unique; I think that it's been seen as an opportunity to gather experience really, and then the overage players are used in sort of a supportive role...which is why I think we missed the point with David Beckham.
"If you compare him to Ryan Giggs, two iconic figures, both players who've been fantastic in their ability... I think if you're making room for Ryan, which I think you should've done, I would have liked to have seen David involved as well."
- MSN caught up with football legend Martin Keown from BT House at BT London Live, to see who else will be there and what's on offer head to http://www.btlondonlive.com/
MSN crap again. Just headliing and stirring to evoke comments.
Simple reality is you pick the best from those that want to play. Why should Stu pick inferior players? To ppease who? Not the fans who pay the money, not the home nations that want to see Team GB do well.
Leave the sour grapes and anti English where it belongs - in the gutter - and suport the Home nations.
Gosh they be saying next you should pick player near the venues they be playing at to save bus fares lol.
On Martins point though hes in my opinion wrong
In no other sport that represents GB is there an equal representation of athletes from the 4 countries
Actually Michael youre wrong otherwise why on the the official olympic medals table does it say Great Britian and Northen Ireland