If Emile Heskey is fast becoming a part of England's past, the Birmingham City striker is at least predicting that Jermaine Pennant will become a part of England's future.
Heskey, who scored twice as Birmingham defeated West Bromwich Albion 3-2 on Saturday, was omitted from the England squad to face Wales and Northern Ireland in the World Cup qualifying matches next month.
Chris Kirkland, the Albion goalkeeper on loan from Liverpool, replaces David James in Sven-Goran Eriksson?s 25-man squad but otherwise there were few surprises.
Heskey?s attitude to his own fading international career is, under the circumstances, constrained. He seems more interested in promoting the virtues of Pennant, his Blues team-mate, who provided much of the creativity in the victory over Albion.
England have a problem on the left of midfield but Pennant could be the man to fill the void, perhaps as early as the World Cup itself in Germany in June.
Pennant is eradicating the memory of the dark days when he spent a month in jail for drink driving offences after initially joining Birmingham on loan from Arsenal during the January transfer window.
That move from Highbury became permanent in the summer and Pennant has continued to repay the faith shown in him by City manager Steve Bruce.
Heskey is convinced that Pennant can be a contender for international recognition in the same way as Kieran Richardson seized his chance on loan at West Brom and scored twice on his full England debut against the United States in Chicago three months ago.
?Getting on the end of Jermaine?s crosses is a pleasure,? Heskey said. ?All you have to do is make a run in the box and he can find you. He has done brilliantly for us. It?s great to have that sort of ammunition coming into you. It certainly wouldn?t surprise me if Sven has him in mind for an England call-up of some sort.
?Jermaine has got such pace and goes past people but he can also deliver a great cross as well. Since he has come to Birmingham, he has stood out. Kieran Richardson did well at Albion and got into the England squad for America and there is a chance for someone to break into the squad. With what Jermaine gives you, he has every chance.?
James, the former Aston Villa goalkeeper, and Chelsea defender Glen Johnson pay the price for England?s ?1,000 mistakes? in Copenhagen by being dropped from the England squad. Johnson and James were two of the four half-time substitutes as England collapsed in the second half to lose 4-1 against Denmark.
Kirkland has replaced Manchester City goalkeeper James, whose international future is now in jeopardy, while there was also a first call-up for Stephen Warnock, the Liverpool left-back, who played on loan for Coventry.
Despite Gary Neville?s injury, Luke Young has still received a call-up.
Darren Bent kept his place in the squad, along with Andrew Johnson, as Alan Smith, who rejected a late call-up for the Denmark game to improve his match- fitness for Manchester United?s reserves, missed out.
James, aged 35, was the most high profile absentee from the squad, having initially lost his place in the side after an embarrassing blunder against
Austria and now the squad after his errors in Denmark. With Paul Robinson entrenched as England?s first-choice keeper, Eriksson is keen to look at Kirkland, who is fit again and playing regularly with Albion, as well as Robert Green of Norwich City.
Eriksson said: ?I have spoken to David James today and explained to him that, on this occasion, I think it?s best not to select him.
?He has always been extremely professional for me and I have assured him that the door is not closed, and that I will be monitoring his form at Manchester City very closely.
?Chris Kirkland is a brilliant prospect who has suffered badly with injuries, but he is now started playing regularly again, so I feel the time is right to have a good look at him.?
England play away to Wales on Saturday and away to Northern Ireland on September 7.