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Is a title challenge possible for Man Utd?

Manchester United
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Warnock tips Gibbs to replace Cole for England

Stephen Warnock is tipping Arsenal's Kieran Gibbs will take over England's left-back role from Ashley Cole in the future, even though that scuppers his own chances of representing his country.

Warnock, 28, was named in the squad for last month's Euro 2012 qualifier with Montenegro at Wembley and was preferred to Leighton Baines as back-up to Cole at the 2010 World Cup in South Africa.

However, the Aston Villa defender recognises the potential of Gibbs and believes he will be ''the ideal replacement'' for Cole, who has moved level with Kenny Sansom as England's most capped full-back on 86 caps.

''Kieran was injured for the last (England) get-together but I know how highly thought of he is within the set-up and by the players,'' Warnock said. ''He is a fantastic talent and he will take over from Ashley Cole in the long run.

''He's a player in the same mould as Ashley and he will be an ideal replacement.''

Warnock added: ''I'm not ruling myself out but, when you see that type of player coming through, you have to hold your hands up and say there's going to be a better player in front of you.

''I don't know whether that's now or in the next couple of years. That's not my choice to make. But Kieran is more than capable of playing at that level. But you never know what might happen. A lot of people didn't give me a chance of going to the World Cup because they thought Leighton Baines would go.''

Gibbs is currently ruled out for "a few weeks" with a knee injury sustained in the 4-0 Carling Cup win at Newcastle on Wednesday and may suffer from a lack of playing time as he has failed to displace Gael Clichy at the club this season.

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