The hitherto uncapped Michael Dawson put himself into contention for the 2010 FIFA World Cup™ after enjoying the best season of his career, helping guide Tottenham Hotspur to UEFA Champions League qualification, but it was ultimately an injury to captain Rio Ferdinand which sealed his place in South Africa.
Dawson began his career at Nottingham Forest, making his debut in 2002 before moving to Tottenham Hotspur in a double transfer deal, along with team-mate Andy Reid, in 2005.
Expecting to provide cover for Spurs in central defence, Dawson’s strong aerial prowess and tackling ability, and his consistent performances, saw him become a regular for the club and be awarded the captaincy in Ledley King’s absence. His displays earned him the 2009/10 Player of the Season award at White Hart Lane.
He has developed an effective partnership with King during his time at the club and recently signed a new five-year contract which will keep him at Tottenham until 2015.
Dawson was a member of Capello's original 30-man squad for the finals, but played no part in the warm-up games against Mexico and Japan. He was not included in the coach's final 23-man travelling party, but a knee injury to Ferdinand on Friday 4 June, saw the 26-year-old take a flight from London to Johannesburg to link up with the Three Lions once again.