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Silva shines and Zaba skippers Argentina

David Silva

David Silva

Pablo Zabaleta realised a boyhood dream last week when he captained his country for the first time against Nigeria – but the match turned into a nightmare as Sergio Batista's weakened side lost 4-1 to the Super Eagles.

Zaba was the only player to retain his place in Argentina’s 2-1 defeat to Poland on Sunday, starting the match at right-back but being replaced at half-time – there are no reports of any cuts or bruises to the City legend-in-the-making! 

James Milner has held his hands up for one of the goals England conceded against Switzerland on Saturday. The City midfielder peeled away from a two-man wall allowing a Swiss free-kick to easily beat Joe Hart during a disappointing 2-2 draw.

“I thought they were going to take it short so I moved out of the wall giving Harty no chance. So I was poor as well," Milner said.

“We will have a rest now then come back and try to improve again and play our hearts out. It is in our hands if we win those three games.

“We are more than capable of beating anybody on our day so we have got to learn from our mistakes and prove it.”

Joe Hart has been criticised for both Swiss goals, but the City keeper was badly let down by his defenders during what was an all-round sloppy display by Fabio Capello’s side.

Shay Given enjoyed a better week after two excellent displays for the Republic of Ireland who beat Scotland 1-0 and Macedonia 2-0 at the weekend, earning his 112th cap in the latter victory.

Meanwhile David Silva was at his brilliant best for Spain as they thrashed the USA 4-0 in Boston, setting up two goals and pulling the strings for La Roja in a masterful display.

Silva played for 65 minutes before being substituted. Staying over the Atlantic, Roque Santa Cruz played in Paraguay’s 2-0 win over Bolivia and Nigel de Jong was up against old team-mates Elano and Robinho as Holland held Brazil 0-0 in Rio.

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