Roy Hodgson ready for 'exciting time' with England

Sunday 18 May 2014
Roy Hodgson and Ray Lewington bring the England squad together this week

Roy Hodgson is looking forward to an "exciting time" as he prepares to meet up with his England team at the start of an important summer.

The Three Lions gather on Monday before setting off for the first part of their World Cup build-up - a training camp in Portugal.

And while Hodgson is keen to focus on the fitness of his players, he also acknowledges that, for some, it has been a long campaign.

Roy Hodgson at England Training

Roy Hodgson will be back on the training pitch with England this week

"It's an exciting time," said Hodgson. "We're thinking more in terms of tailoring a programme to suit the players and where they are at the end of the season, which will no doubt vary slightly. 

"With someone like Gerrard, who is coming off the back of never missing a game hardly, he's not going to want the same training as Phil Jagielka, who's just got back from injury. We're thinking about all of those things. 

"We're thinking about the unit meetings that we want to introduce, to make certain the players understand what we're looking for from them. 

"It will be done mostly on the training ground but the chances in Portugal we'll do quite a lot in the unit meetings, to save their legs a little bit, because we don't want people to come back from Portugal tired already." 

The England team spend five days in the Algarve and then next week arrive at St. George's Park to get ready for their South American send-off against Peru at Wembley on Friday 30 May. 

Raheem Sterling in training this week for England

Raheem Sterling in training

Hodgson added: "My initial thoughts were like a glorified training/rest period. And then we decided to move away from that and forget the actual rest part where maybe families come along; let's keep it to football. 

"But it's still only one week since the end of the season, they still need some time to recover. Let's see if we can use this recovery time for fitness and to put some thoughts into their head.

"I don't think in Portugal it will be an awful lot of what I would consider serious tactical work on the training field. I think that will begin at St. George's Park and continue all the way on from there."

Tickets for England's game against Peru at Wembley are still available. Click here to get your tickets to cheer the Three Lions off to Brazil...

By Jamie Bradbury FA Editor