Nicky Butt might not be an automatic starter for his club but Andy Cole would play him for England.
Nicky Butt might not be an automatic starter for his club but Andy Cole would have him wearing an England shirt this summer.
Sometimes the value of players can only be assessed by talking to people who are next to them in the trenches.
Having won league championships, FA Cups and Champions Leagues with Nicky Butt, his former Manchester United team-mate Andy Cole has no doubt he will shine for England at Euro2004 even if he hasn’t been a regular for his club this season.
"Picking a player of Nicky’s quality is never, ever a risk," says Cole.
"Regardless of how many games he has or hasn’t played recently, Butty has proven so many times over the years he won’t let anyone down.
"He had a fantastic World Cup and he would be in my England side for this summer."
Butt has admitted his future might lie outside United next season. But Sven Goran Eriksson had no doubts about picking him for the European Championship.
"People were saying Steve Gerrard was a big miss at the World Cup but they had forgotten how much Butty had won in his career and what he can do on the field.
"He showed them on the pitch at the World Cup and he can do so again."