Gullit: Capello should pick world wonder King

Former Chelsea manager and Dutch international Ruud Gullit believes Fabio Capello should name Tottenham Hotspur defender Ledley King in his final 23-man squad for the World Cup finals - but admitted taking the injury-prone stopper would be a risk.

The 29-year-old centre-back - blighted by a knee injury for several years - has been in exceptional form for Harry Redknapp's side this season, guiding Spurs to fourth place in the Premier League for the first time, ensuring Champions League football at White Hart Lane next term.

However, the Bow-born enforcer is unique in that he rarely trains before matches in order to protect his suspect knee that, until recently, had often prevented him from playing more than one match per week.

King, who has won 19 caps for England but last played for the Three Lions in June 2007, featured more times for his club in 2009/10 than current national skipper Rio Ferdinand, who has been troubled by an ongoing back problem.

And Gullit, who played for the Netherlands at the 1990 World Cup in Italy - also with knee complaints - believes the Tottenham defender's form is reason enough to take him to South Africa.

Speaking at the launch of the Budweiser Prediction Panel, he told FourFourTwo.com: "King is a world wonder, somebody who doesn't train a lot and still plays - and plays well - despite a dodgy knee.

"I think he should go to the World Cup and I just hope that he can manage his knee through the tournament. I know what it's like to have a dodgy knee."

But he warned that, having not played for England for three years and with no Champions League experience, playing King against some of the world's top strikers could be a risky move.

"Would you play a player with no Champions League and little international experience against some of the world's best strikers with a troublesome knee?

"Would Capello take that risk if England were playing against Lionel Messi, Cristiano Ronaldo or Luis Fabiano and he had not trained before the match?

"For me it's an issue, but he is a world wonder. When I look at him I have to take my hat off and say 'unbelievable, how do you do it?'"

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Ruud Gullit is part of the Budweiser Prediction Panel, encouraging football fans to make 2010 FIFA World Cup predictions at www.budweiser.co.uk/predictandwin to be in with a chance of winning fantastic prizes including £100,000.