Hodgson happy with squad choices
By Alex Shaw
Monday, 10 September, 2012
England Manager doesn't want to 'tinker' too much, but welcomes newcomers to the squad.
England Manager Roy Hodgson is delighted to bring in youngsters Adam Lallana and Raheem Sterling for the Three Lions' World Cup qualifier against Ukraine on Tuesday night.
Both Daniel Sturridge and Theo Walcott have been struck by illness, which has allowed uncapped duo Lallana and Sterling to be a part of Hodgson's set-up for the clash at Wembley.
"It is good, when you have a chance, to get these players around for a short period of time," said Hodgson.
"Their early performances for Saints and Liverpool have been very impressive. I have watched Adam in Southampton and I've known about him for some while.
"With Raheem, I met him a few years ago at Liverpool and of course in the last few years he has come on in leaps and bounds. The reports on him have been very good. This was a chance to bring him into the group.
"They have certainly made a good impact and I am delighted with how they have played. It's very good for us to have these obvious talents coming through and succeeding when they break onto the scene.
"Before you become an established player you have to do it week after week for your club team. Each challenge is a fresh challenge. People are behind them and we will give them every chance to shine."
Walcott has now returned to Arsenal following his illness, but Sturridge will remain with the squad and will hopefully be available for the match on Tuesday.
"Theo has picked up some sort of virus," added Hodgson. "He was violently ill last night but Daniel actually trained and got through the session. Today, he woke up with the same sort of stomach cramps, so we were advised to keep him out of training.
"We hope it's not coming round the whole squad. We called up the extra players just in case. We hope they are isolated cases with the two players."
With England on a high after a 5-0 victory over Moldova in their opening game on the road to Brazil, Hodgson says he doesn't want to tinker too much with his side to face Ukraine at Wembley.
He will have to replace John Terry, though, as the Chelsea captain has an ankle injury. Either Gary Cahill or Phil Jagielka will get the nod and Hodgson added: "They are both good players so it's a tight decision. It's a nice position to be in. It's up to me to choose the better player for this match. I haven't done that yet.
"I am not trying to be coy about the team. We were excellent against Moldova so I see no reason for making any changes other than the ones forced upon us. As long as nothing untoward happens we will stay the same."
Tickets for the Ukraine match at Wembley on Tuesday are still on sale, and a family of four can come along for a bargain price of £60