Roy Hodgson surprised quite a few people today when he named his squad for the upcoming World Cup qualifiers against San Marino and Poland.
Hodgson gave first call-ups to Celtic goalkeeper Fraser Forster and Stoke defender Ryan Shawcross while also recalling Arsenal left-back Kieran Gibbs and Spurs winger Aaron Lennon for the
The call-ups of Forster and Shawcros highlights the problem that Hodgson has in that many of his choices are either not playing for their clubs or are injured.
In Forster’s case, Jack Butland is with the U21’s for their European Championship play-off with Serbia. Robert Green has been dropped by QPR, leaving the door open for Forster.
It’s a similar scenario at center-half with John Terry in self-imposed retirement. Gary Cahill and Joleon Lescott are not regulars with Chelsea and Man City respectively, while Tottenham’s Steven Caulker is playing for the U21’s. Also out with injuries are Manchester United pair of Phil Jones and Chris Smalling.
There is an interesting situation going on at Manchester City for Hodgson, in that most of the English players at City are not playing on a regular basis. In addition to Lescott, Barry, Milner and Rodwell are all struggling to hold down a place in Roberto Mancini’s team and that is having a negative impact on England.
Also in the squad are Ashley Cole, who will earn his 100th cap in Poland, and Wayne Rooney, Andy Carroll and Adam Johnson, who all missed the qualifiers last month.
And there was no place for Gareth Barry, with Frank Lampard set to captain England in place of the suspended Steven Gerrard while Glen Johnson is also only available for the Poland game.
Forster, Hart, Ruddy, Baines, Cahill, Cole, Gibbs, Jagielka, G Johnson, Lescott, Shawcross, Walker, Carrick, Cleverley, Gerrard, A Johnson, Lennon, Lampard, Milner, Oxlade-Chamberlain, Walcott, Carroll, Defoe, Rooney, Welbeck