Soccer Starz

Gary Cahill - England

Position: DEFENDER

Cahill, born in Dronfield, is a 6’2” central defender. He finally made his Villa debut, at 20, as a substitute in a 5-0 Old Trafford defeat to Manchester United.

He won the first of three England Under-21 caps in the first official match played at the new Wembley, a 3-3 draw with Italy before 55,000 fans in March 2007. His other caps came in the same season – a 5-0 win over Slovakia in a friendly and a 0-0 draw with Czech Republic in the opening fixture of the UEFA Championship Finals in Holland.

At the age of 23 Cahill was chosen for his first full England squad following the injured Rio Ferdinand’s withdrawal from the squad to travel to Kazakhstan for a World Cup Qualifier in June 2009.

He missed out on a place in the final squad for South Africa, but was given the chance to impress in a Euro 2012 qualifier at home to Bulgaria and friendlies against Denmark and Ghana. Cahill then scored his first England goal in the 3-0 victory away to the Bulgarians in September 2011.

After months of speculation he joined Chelsea in January 2012 and enjoyed instant success as he helped his new club to both The FA Cup and Champions League Finals.