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Hodgson unveils solid if unspectacular England vision

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Phil McNulty | 10:16 UK time, Thursday, 17 May 2012

Roy Hodgson's only complaint about the next phase of his new life as England manager was being asked about Rio Ferdinand "until the cows come home" - the rest was happily filed under football reasons.

Indeed, Hodgson used the phrase "footballing reasons" so often that he received that ultimate seal of approval, or disapproval depending on your viewpoint, and started a Twitter trend.

If Hodgson was playing it by the Football Association's book when he made his introductions following his appointment earlier this month, here he was in relaxed form as he revealed his Euro 2012 squad.

In one of those strange quirks of fate football often unfurls, Hodgson was unveiling his vision for England's immediate future as an echo of his past rang around Wembley.

As Hodgson relaxed into his England role and named the 23-man squad for Euro 2012, his successor as Liverpool manager Kenny Dalglish was feeling the same chill of cold American steel he experienced at Anfield in January 2011.

If Hodgson felt that his journey from the sack by John W Henry at Liverpool to England, via West Bromwich Albion, was the game's equivalent of stepping out of the frying pan into the fire he did a very good job of not showing it.

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Apart from that sharp rejoinder when asked one question too many for his liking on the subject of his preference for John Terry over Rio Ferdinand - "footballing reasons" - he gave off a quiet confidence about his selection and England's hopes for Poland and Ukraine.

Asking a photographer to move aside so he could see an inquisitor, greeting a question that started with a list of his perceived qualities as a coach with "there's a big 'but' coming here" (there wasn't) and light-heartedly admitting one slightly pessimistic query had immediately crushed his confidence, this was Hodgson at home in his new surroundings.

This was a squad that was not going to produce fevered excitement. After all, Hodgson has been juggling jobs with England and West Brom so was hardly likely to produce shocks and mass experimentation, but he was still in no mood to talk down England's chances.

He said: "The senior players I've spoken to, who have one or two tournaments behind them and one or two disappointments where they've had to come home and face criticism, will tell you we can win it.

"I'd refer you to Denmark in 92 and Greece in 2004. You don't necessarily have to be the best team to win the tournament. You can get by with good team spirit and a bit of luck at the right time. We're one of 16 teams so that's 16-1. I'm not a gambler but..."

There is no doubt there is an element of a punt about some of his choices but England's Euro 2012 party was always going to lean towards solid as opposed to spectacular.

The spectacular came with the inclusion of Arsenal teenager Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain. This is no repeat of his team-mate Theo Walcott's shock inclusion by Sven-Goran Eriksson for the 2006 World Cup, which effectively descended into a 'What I Did On My Holidays' experience for the youngster.

Oxlade-Chamberlain has demonstrated the power and pace to trouble teams in the Premier League and Champions League. Not a starter but a very presentable shock tactic.

The inclusion of Liverpool's Andy Carroll, deemed a waste of £35m waste of money until a late-season surge of form at Anfield, is an example of one of those late bolts towards the squad but also a reflection of England's shallow pool of strikers.

Norwich City's Grant Holt has clearly been deemed not of international class despite his goals this season while Peter Crouch can now be regarded as being consigned to the dustbin of England history.

Hodgson has much plotting to do with Wayne Rooney suspended for England's opening two games and it is clear Carroll is right at the forefront of his thinking.

He cleared up any questions about the player's approach with Dalglish before his Anfield departure and said: "His profile is right as a player. I hope I'm not into selecting players on the basis of going to a game one day, seeing him having a good game and then giving him an England shirt. I'd like to think I've been in the game long enough not to fall for that trick.

"He will give me options because of his target play, ability and his capability of making runs into the channels. It's a profile issue as much as anything else although it is fair to say his late burst has helped to give him the nod."

Much debate also surrounded the inclusion of Liverpool's Stewart Downing. He has been poor since his £20m move from Aston Villa to Liverpool but seems to be assuming the old Emile Heskey mantle of being the player managers like to have around, who apparently makes the contribution that is somehow beyond the all-seeing eyes of supporters.

Hodgson was clearly in no mood to duck the big decisions, as evidence by his choice of Terry - and also by his willingness to switch captains. Tottenham's Scott Parker had the honour under caretaker Stuart Pearce but the new man turned to one of England's elder statesmen as Liverpool's Steven Gerrard reclaimed the armband.

Gerrard may carry some scars from the captaincy in South Africa two years ago, but an examination of his contribution there will reveal he was one of the few creditable performers and has carried the captaincy well since. This is a sound move.

Hodgson admitted he had been "parachuted in" to take charge of the squad Fabio Capello left behind - but he was still keen to stress this had as much of his stamp on it as he could imprint in his short spell in charge.

The work will gather pace now as Hodgson begins the assessment of England's forthcoming opponents. The serious business is about to begin.


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  • Comment number 1.

    The squad, or certain choices such as Gerrard as captain, certainly don't fill me with confidence. Looks like it's just repeating the same mistakes once again. Hopefully the inevitable Euro failure will wake Hodgson up and he will start ringing the changes that are required to move England forward from the 'golden generation' era. What a misnomer.

  • Comment number 2.

    How the worm has turned

    Hope Roy does well

  • Comment number 3.

    Very disappointed to see John Terry in the squad, for all sorts of reasons.

  • Comment number 4.

    I can't believe all the hoo-haa about Ferdinand's omission. He has been guilty of some cataclysmic errors this season. His legs have completely gone and he has had a poor season. Also, he has made the right decision not taking the plodder Carrick. Has never performed for England.

    Overall a good squad selection from Hodgson, be interesting to see what different approach he may bring to the way England approach games.

  • Comment number 5.


    I'm glad to see Terry in the squad. People who read too many red-tops have the impression that he is a major disrupting force in the dressing room, although there is no evidence of this whatsoever, indeed all the young players seem to look up to him, despite what misdemeanours he may get up to away from football.

  • Comment number 6.

    I think Hodgson was a good appointment, and I hope he does well obviously.

    I just don't think he's helped himself with this squad. Carroll instead of Crouch or even Holt? Defoe instead of Sturridge? Stewart '0 goals 0 assists' Downing? No Carrick? No Micah Richards and taking Phil Jones, who isn't a right back, as right back cover? Milner, Barry and Parker who have zero creativity in their entire bodies?

    I wish him luck, he might need it with that squad.

  • Comment number 7.

    If he isnt good enough for liverpool and the prem, he isnt good enough for england.

    Why is it the English FA consistantly getting things wrong, they are a joke beyond comparhension.

    I already know what will happen this summer, player revolt after first game, calls for rio and richards from the fans, the newspapers will see money is to be made on Roy's head, Roy to quit england after comp. England back to square one!

  • Comment number 8.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 9.

    At 11:24 17th May 2012, derwaldmann - 22-01-2011 wrote:
    not surprised to hear that from a kop fan, rio has been one of the best defenders in the league this season, jhe has played more games than Stevie groin strain Gerrard this season and managed to keep united in the title race once again. Carrick wants no paert of this england squad as he knows its a waste of time, gerrard and lampard in mid feild again..... eyah thats going to work

  • Comment number 10.

    Roy was in a tough position here. I thought he could have taken a lot of pressure off himself by picking a completely young, experimental looking squad, as if to say 'Let's have a go, see what our youngsters have got and prepare for the WC'.

    To be honest, most of our special youngsters are injured. Also, why would you really leave out Englands best performers in the league and europe. People forget how good Lampard has been this season. He showed his class in the CL as well as FA Cup.

    Really disappointed for Micah Richards. Seems like a decent guy as well as a beast. Looked good for City this season I thought. Looks like Roy ran out of defender slots with that one, can't believe he's not on standby though. Rio is slightly different. You don't want to end someone's international career like that but I guess there's no time for sentiment with international football. (Unless Becks gets picked for the Olympics!)

    Terry seems dangerous to the squad but bar a ridiculous moment in Barcelona looks solid. You always know you'll get 110% from him in an England shirt.

    Also, Downing. Funny comparison with Heskey from Phil there. Difference is, we actually thought Heskey offered something at the WC2010, Downing has zero assists or goals this season! And they say the Ox is a shock?!

    We look weak up front but we have for a while to be honest so nothing new. Welbeck is still very young and looks like he'll come good - he's kept Chicarito out the Utd squad don't forget. Carroll looked good for 2 games but maybe peaked at the right time.

    Ultimately it's very refreshing to go into a tournament as underdogs. Let's back Roy, support the team and see what happens. And if we don't get through the group stages, we never expected to anyway.

  • Comment number 11.

    Is it true Roy has never used any other formation other than 4-4-2 in his whole career?

  • Comment number 12.

    For years now all I've wanted from England is something to be proud of. A team my friends and I could go to a pub and watch and KNOW they were the best eleven players in the country proudly pulling on the shirt and giving their all. I really thought this would happen this summer but yesterday's announcment has just bombed that.

    Terry? Past it and a disgrace to the shirt.
    Carroll? Awful season.
    Defoe? Not even a first team player for his team.
    Downing? ABSOLUTLE JOKE. His only assist this season was in getting Dalglish sacked.


  • Comment number 13.

    Disappointed not to see Richards and Sturridge, but even more disappointed to see that Downing is going. England are going to need to play well and have some luck, all the games are going to be tricky

  • Comment number 14.

    @5 Maybe you don't recall the Bridge issue, the captain issue and now the Ferdinand issue.

    Other than Terry, I think he's chosen the right players and has a good balance.

    People will whinge about Downing which is understandable, but he does represent an option and can be a good impact substitute, so a reasonable squad player choice.

    There will be also be lots of whinging about the other fringe players, but most of these won't even get a game, so it's pointless really.

  • Comment number 15.

    This is no criticism of Roy as I don't think he had many alternatives, but when I saw the squad I realised it must be the worst midfield and forward line (until Rooney is available) that we have sent to a tournament in decades.

    Gerrard, Lampard & Barry are no longer god enough to perform at the required level for 3 games in a short space of time & then Defoe, Carroll & Downing is simply a joke of a group of players. The sad thing is that injuries mean they will all play.

    Who knows maybe it might work out for the best for once but I think we just need to get this tournament out of the way.

    PS how on earth was Roy scouting these players, the FA made such a mess of the appointment that surely he hasn't seen anything of these players in games apart from the ones they played against WBA in.

  • Comment number 16.

    Butland and Henderson as call-up options says it all about England's shallow puddle of talent. I just hope Hodgson, Lewington and Neville are given the time and support to build for the 2014 World Cup when, with Wilshire back and some of the emerging talent coming through, we might just have a team that could realistically aspire to the quarter finals or semis.

    Hodgson's gambling on Carroll and Oxlade-Chamberlain, and I hope it comes off. I was very disappointed to see Terry in the squad because Jagielka and Lescott are such a great partnership; however, I can understand the attraction of the Chelsea connection of Terry, Cahill and Cole (the latter, Hart and Rooney being the only genuinely class acts in the squad).

    It's also a real shame that France is the first rather than the last game, as I reckon we'll lose to them and be on the back-foot against Sweden then have to win against Ukraine. Sound familiar?

  • Comment number 17.

    At 11:23 17th May 2012, dogeared wrote:

    Very disappointed to see John Terry in the squad, for all sorts of reasons.
    such as? he's been bang in form this season

  • Comment number 18.

    I think Roy had to be relatively conservative with this squad for several reasons: He's barely been in the job a few days, so taking youth for the sake of youth may well have resulted in a random selection of youngsters that may or may not have a future with England, especially considering high profile/potential youngsters like Wilshere, Smalling and Rodwell are unavailable.

    What's more, with them injured there really is a dearth of quality be it young or old, so when people say "why take Gerrard, Lampard, etc" you have to reply "well... who else?". Carrick maybe over Barry? Cleverly for one of Gerrard/Lampard? Debatable.

    It's not really a matter of "repeating old mistakes", its give or take the best quad we have available, and whether that's the same as last time or completely different really isn't relevant.

    It's a squad parallel to that of Roy's appointment - not exciting at all, but solid and capable, with a bit of luck etc. to make the Euros enjoyable viewing.

  • Comment number 19.

    Apparently Roy was praising Ox for the performance he put in playing against Pirlo when Arsenal beat AC Milan :s

  • Comment number 20.

    I think Ox deserves to go, the kid has talent, get him some exp for the next world cup, also he has courage this kid, he doenst seem bothered by any of the hype.

  • Comment number 21.

    I think that Roy has picked a decent squad from what was on offer. The Ferdinand/Terry situation would be impossible for any manager. They clearly cannot play together but Terry and Cahill know each other well and have shown that they can perform together in the Champions League, so it was an easier option to leave him out. Whatever decision he made there would have been a story which is unfortunate for Roy.

    I don't think that anyone can greatly criticise the rest of his squad selection until they are actually seen playing together in the system that Roy will deploy.
    Hodgson will do well with England even if the media will be anti-Roy from day one so perhaps we should make our own judgements before listening to the negativity.

  • Comment number 22.


    He didn't look in form when he got nutmegged 3 times in the 4-1 Liverpool defeat, or when he got the straight red against Barcelona.

    He was completely lost at South Africa.

    The guy is past it and a total liability.

  • Comment number 23.

    The real life Mike Bassett has arrived at the England helm

  • Comment number 24.

    Far too many average liverpool players in the england squad - picked by Roy Hodgson of all people ! Swap Richards for Glen Johnson,Adam johnson for Downing and carrick instead of henderson as back up,that is about the squad hodgson should have picked ! Will just about give carroll benefit of doubt ahead of crouch. Still glad "The Ox" is in though i suppose which is all i really wanted.....oh and lets all hope Rob green doesnt get a game,surely hodgson could have tempted foster back ?

    The team should have been picked mainly from the top 2 teams that finished 37 points clear of a certain scouse team !

  • Comment number 25.

    Can I just add that I'm extremely glad Roy has used 'footballing reasons' to decide who goes. Terry/Cahill is equally as solid as Terry/Ferdinand but injuries make it the preferred choice.

    Captaincy is for people who have the pride, the loyalty, and the off-the-pitch demeanor, who will always start.

    Being selected is about being the best player for that position, partnerships considered.

    On that reasoning, Gerrard, Parker, Hart and Milner if he could hold a permanent place, would all make good captains, whilst Cole, Terry etc make good players on the pitch.

    Simply distinction, but an important one and I'm delighted Roy has done so

  • Comment number 26.

    King Red, I don't support Liverpool. Typical of United fan's point of view. Nobody's allowed to say Rio shouldn't be in the team. He's an accident waiting to happen. Terry should definitely go.

    My only problem, as someone else stated, is with the RB position. He's got Baines, Johnson and Jones as all potential rightbacks, but has only taken Cole at LB. Other than that, he's got it spot on.

  • Comment number 27.

    @24 couldn't agree more

  • Comment number 28.

    Good choice with gerrard as captain tho,dont want to look like Lfc bashing like other people on here do to other clubs players,take the specs off plz....

  • Comment number 29.


    Yes, I couldn't understand why Johnson was in there. Along with Rio, he is an error prone bungler. Would have been much more useful to have taken someone like Smalling or Richards as defensive cover.

  • Comment number 30.

    good decision on the ferdinand front but hodgson made a few big errors such as only having one right back and also taking downing over adam johnson. plus the biggest mistake of them all taking andy carroll over well basically any other english striker that was available to us. i am also a bit concerned that we will end up taking henderson if parker isnt fit to take to the euros

  • Comment number 31.

    Downing to score the winner against Ukraine to get us out of the groups.

  • Comment number 32.

    Why Downing? Because he's the only left-footed wide player available and Roy's clearly committed to playing with width. England will start with Young and Walcott, and the Ox and Downing (in that order) will come off the bench if needed. It's not ideal but, short of playing Cole or Baines out of position, we haven't got the luxury of choice in this department. Let's just hope Young, Walcott and the Ox aren't injured!

  • Comment number 33.

    One good thing I have noticed about Roy, is that even though he is a quiet man, he's got the steel to ignore pleas from fanboys to include plodders like Ferdinand, Scholes and Carrick

  • Comment number 34.

    I don't think Rio should be in either, he'd struggle to be fit for every game and from a United point of view i'd much prefer him to have the summer to get ready for the new season.

    But have you seen Terry play this season? He's the very definition of 'an accident waiting to happen'.

  • Comment number 35.

    At 11:53 17th May 2012, derwaldmann - 22-01-2011 wrote:
    Baines is a left back so no need to worry. I thought hodgson handled the rio/terry situation fairly well tbh and the squad was ok by me besides the heavy amount of average liverpool players. I will never understand how downing gets in ahead of A Johnson,like a bad dream....

  • Comment number 36.

    I was quietly pleased when Roy Hodgson was appointed England manager. Until yesterday. The squad is AWFUL. No Micah Richards or Aaron Lennon? Does Roy watch football ever, other than West Brom games? Downing? Please God help us if he's one of the 23 best available English footballers. Also, only 7 defenders, yet 9 midfielders? Oxlade-Chamberlain has no experience, Ashley Young falls over more than Drogba, and Andy Carroll? Still, on the plus side, we'll be out after the first round, and can then enjoy watching the rest of the tournament!

  • Comment number 37.

    That squad was a bit of an anti-climax in many ways. Injury robbed us of Wilshere, Walker and Smalling, players that a lot of people were looking forward to seeing. Then Terry getting picked. I didn't want him or Rio in the squad but picking just one of them will, rightly or wrongly, smack of taking sides in the race row. Downing hasn't delivered this season and Adam Johnson is a superior player anyway so I'm unhappy with that one. Micah Richards not being picked is an outrage, he's been excellent all season and the suggestion that Glen Johnson is a better RB is frankly an insult to him. Also none too happy to see Sturridge left out in favour of Carroll and Defoe.

    Nevertheless I always wish the team every success and some picks I'm quite pleased with (Ruddy has deserved his place and Oxlade-Chamberlain is a big talent for the future).

    Btw, is Richards on standby? I don't usually wish injury on anyone but if he is on standby I'm praying Terry misses out so he can get in.

  • Comment number 38.

    Had high hopes for Hodgson. Now just hopes to get out of the group stages.

    Maybe with a poor team and lowered expectations he can galvanise the team to get to the quarters?

  • Comment number 39.

    At 11:59 17th May 2012, Chris Dean wrote:

    Why Downing? Because he's the only left-footed wide player available....
    Adam johnson is a left footed wide player and only didnt get more games for Man City due to them having david silva in a similar role. Adam johnson had showed far more in far less games than downing and blatantly has more talent.

  • Comment number 40.

    Let's be honest here, we don't have strikers of international quality. Rooney's work ethic will always give us a chance but he's not a striker, he drops back to defend too much. Playing for United that's one thing, but playing for England who are going to be under pressure a lot more than united, he's going to be spending too much time in and around the centre circle. The natural finisher we have Defoe is going to make or break our tournament, if he gets it right on the day we have a chance.

  • Comment number 41.

    26.At 11:53 17th May 2012, derwaldmann - 22-01-2011 wrote:
    King Red, I don't support Liverpool. Typical of United fan's point of view. Nobody's allowed to say Rio shouldn't be in the team. He's an accident waiting to happen. Terry should definitely go.

    My only problem, as someone else stated, is with the RB position. He's got Baines, Johnson and Jones as all potential rightbacks, but has only taken Cole at LB. Other than that, he's got it spot on.

    FYI baines is a LB.

    Spot on? Carroll? Downing??

  • Comment number 42.

    Just to point out about Michael Carrick. I was surprised he wasn't in there until I heard he said to Roy that he was only willing to go if he was a first choice player. We've all seen what has happened with the England rugby team when they only play the players who are passionate about their country. Glad to see the football team are following suit.

  • Comment number 43.

    At 11:53 17th May 2012, derwaldmann - 22-01-2011 wrote:

    apologies, thought you were a kop fan. aside from that rio has been great for us this season, the reasons he wasnt picked is down to the JT thing, for me JT shouldnt have been picked if anyone was to miss out on a place over the incident it should have been him. suits united though, at least we wont have to worry about losing rio for the start of the season or being involved in any of the usual media madness that will come about when England are put out.

  • Comment number 44.

    What a load of rubbish!

    Firstly, John Terry? Please how the heck can you pick someone so vile and an alledged racist to boot! Next we have Phil jone as right back cover? He should replace John Terry. And Micah Richards be the right back cover. (I personally thought Rio played himself into contention over the last few weeks, but think that Fergies comments may have swayed Hodgson not to take him)

    Secondly Downing before Adam Johnson........ are you bonkers?

    Next pick one of the two Barry OR Parker, not both. Same applies with Lampard and Gerrard pick one or the other.

    Lastly Defoe instead of Sturridge?

    OMG, this is the worst case scenario I was dreading when the FA appointed Hodgson. I'm thinking Neville wishes he'd stayed at Sky now. Or maybe he thought, Hodgson won't last long and I might get it. If so well played.

  • Comment number 45.

    39: Adam johnson had showed far more in far less games than downing and blatantly has more talent...
    and hasn't played enough games this season (but, grudgingly, I take your point)

  • Comment number 46.

    19.At 11:46 17th May 2012, Red-Manc wrote:
    Apparently Roy was praising Ox for the performance he put in playing against Pirlo when Arsenal beat AC Milan :s

    Pirlo now plays for Juve ;)

  • Comment number 47.

    Rio should not be in the squad and Roy has made the right choice - simply because he is not good enough and has not been for a couple of years - his pace at international level would be found wanting

    HOWEVER perhaps what he might have done would be to do what European RC team did last year when they took Garcia as a vice captain - different sort of event I know but if Rio could have provided any kind of support then it might have been in a position that Gary Neville has taken up.

    Downing is not the only left sided player - it was between him and Adam Johnson and even thuogh Johnson has not played a lot he should be onthe plane. Downing is not good enough and has proved it all season.

    Carrol is beginning to show the form he showed at newcastle and he might thrive at the big tournament - for me it was his own realisation that he is good enuogh to play at the top level and hopefully he will carry that into the Euros

    Carrick told Roy weeks ago he did not want to be considered

    Scholes does nothing except pass the ball backwards

    we have a pace, strenght, some skill and im happy with the squad

    why on earth england "fans" on here are coming out with lines like "same old same old", "it will all end in tears again" well they should go away and follow a different sport if they cannot get behind their team.

  • Comment number 48.

    44.At 12:13 17th May 2012, swintondude wrote:
    Or maybe he thought, Hodgson won't last long and I might get it. If so well played.

    He'll be in line to take the LFC job in the summer........

    I bet Downing is over the moon to have won a 2 week break to Poland and Ukraine!

  • Comment number 49.

    Hodgson is trying to pick from a group of players that are not good enough to compete for international trophies. Club allegiancies of the various posters doesn't disguise the fact that not one of these players couldn't be replaced by another and it wouldn't seriously weaken the team.

  • Comment number 50.

    I hate to say it but I think we will not do well in the Euro's. Why didn't Hodgson pick a squad of young players and start a new England era? He has picked some but not enough. We need think long term. Look at how exciting Stuart Lancaster's England team are

  • Comment number 51.

    This could possibly be the worst england squad i have seen in a long time.

    If something doesnt work the first second thrid forth and fifth time why try it a sixth time. Gerrard and Lampard have proven time and time again that they cant play together, why is Roy trying the same failed line up again.

    can anyone tell me if its true Roy has only ever used 4-4-2 formation throughout his whole career?

  • Comment number 52.

    Downing & Defoe are my 2 doubts, but the other contenders did not do themselves any justice. That is Adam Johnson, did not play enough games, & Sturridge did not keep up his scoring form (probably has to do with AVB sack and the senior chelsea players pushing him down the pecking order).
    Roy Hodgson has to ensure he has a fast flowing midfield, as the combination of Gerrard, Lampard, Barry together on the pitch do not have the legs and skills to do this throughout the tournamentThe of them starting a game means the team will be hoping for a mistake or luck to get a goal. Outside Roys 1st team i do wonder what is 2nd tactical option would be, especially as this is not a team he has manged or developed himself. England will be hoping for luck throughout this tournament just hpethey can get out of the group stage. My hopes would be on the world cup qualifying campaign, where Roy would have to select a whole new set of players to qualify, which would be wherehis challenging task will be. Best of luck in the Euros as that is wexcatly what the team will need, as there would be disharmony in the playing styles due to ageing & tired legs. Roy should have gone with many more younger future England players to give them a test run of what to expect during the world cup qualifiers

  • Comment number 53.

    third not thrid

  • Comment number 54.

    With this squad (or any combination of players available) we'll be doing very well to get out of the group.
    A bit depressed to see so many names that got stuffed by the Germans still taking up space in the squad.
    Having said that, like 24, Richards, A Johnson and Anyone for G Johnson, Downing and Terry would be about all I'd change.
    The players just aren't there - let's accept it and celebrate getting out of the group if we can manage that.

  • Comment number 55.

    When I saw that Hodgson was going to 'make his mark' on his first England squad, I hoped that would mean more than just one or two interesting call-ups. What I don't get is why nobody has mentioned some of the star performers at smaller clubs. Grant Holt and John Ruddy have got deserved mentions, and Ruddy indeed has got the call, but not a word about Anthony Pilkington, and nothing at all for Swansea. I'd have thought Scott Sinclair and Steven Caulker would at least be in with an outside chance, but it's like everyone forgot they existed.

    As for John Terry, I wouldn't want him anywhere near my squad if I were manager. He may be a leader, but it seems to me that his style is 'do what I say and I won't have you cast out', and that on top of the racism charges, the thing with Wayne Bridge and a couple of 'unfortunate' slips this season (I recall him falling flat on his face a couple of times, and of course the idiotic Barcelona thing), I really don't see what he adds that nobody with less baggage could.

    And oh yes, Stewart Downing. I've always rated him highly, but this season has been abysmal for him. I hope for his sake that Liverpool's new manager either finds a way to get the best out of him or sells him on to someone that can.

    Best of luck to the Ox, though. Go get 'em.

  • Comment number 56.

    54: The players just aren't there - let's accept it and celebrate getting out of the group if we can manage that...
    Spot on

  • Comment number 57.

    G Johnson and Downing out, Richards and A Johnson in. 2 very poor decisions, other than that there are no real surprises, Terry has played better than Rio this season. Expectation is so low that we actually do ok this time

  • Comment number 58.

    All this user's posts have been removed.Why?

  • Comment number 59.

    Goalkeepers - Other than Hart they are all pretty much the same, however for that reason I would rather see a couple of young keepers as back up to Hart.

    Defenders - Jones above Jagielka, ferdinand and Richards is an embarassment to football. Ferdinand plays centre back for United where as Jones has either been sub or right back. Is Jones even that good? Glen Johnson is the only recognised right back - joke

    Why not let Gibbs haev a run in the squad as deputy to Cole???

    Midfielders - Has to be the most one paced, lack of creativity set of midefielders ever put together. Barry, lampard, Milner, Parker and Gerrard. All getting on and none of them had great season, none of them control a game anymore(gerrard used to) and none of them have any skill.

    Wingers - No Adam johnson even though he is left footed and can cross a ball, no lennon even though he has been in good form this year and has looked miles better than Downing.

    Forwards - Who else is there really - at least Defoe knows where the net is. He has more goals than Carroll and Welbeck and has hardly played so his goal scoring is proven. Would of Taken Sturridge though.

    All in all this has to show that the standard of English players is disgraceful abd we must get back to grass roots and create some skillful and technical players.

  • Comment number 60.

    Have people seen the standby list too!!! LFC or England?

  • Comment number 61.

    1- rio has been kind of average this season, I do not like Terry personally and think Phil Jagielka should be going instead, but if the choice based on this season was between Rio and Terry only, I'd take Terry.

    2- Hodgson is lucky everyone wanted to talk about Rio yesterday, because the decision to include Downing is an absolute joke. He has had more than enough games to conjure up a goal or assist this season and hasn't done it once. Terrible indictment of english football that he is anywhere near the squad.

    3- Delighted to see that daniel sturridge isn't in the squad- massive attitude but no more than an average player who doesn't understand the team ethic at all. Defoe will score goals, that's what he does. daniel sturridge would have chucked in a few stepovers and shot from 30 yards rather than pass it. good decision.

    4- we are going to get MULLERED by the swedes and the french.

  • Comment number 62.


    I'll bet he is. Although I imagine he's lost a fortune on the holiday he originally booked, that he's now had to cancel.

    In all honesty, I'm still in a state of shock when I look at the squad he's picked.

  • Comment number 63.

    Sad about the sacking really. I thought KD and Liverpool deserved each other.

    Moan about everything and accept responsibility for nothing.

    After reading some of the posts from LFC fans mentioning Pep, Mourinho you can add delusional.

    If you ask nicely you might get Pudsey the dog.

  • Comment number 64.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 65.

    At 12:02 17th May 2012, derwaldmann - 22-01-2011 wrote:

    One good thing I have noticed about Roy, is that even though he is a quiet man, he's got the steel to ignore pleas from fanboys to include plodders like Ferdinand, Scholes and Carrick
    Terry Lampard and Gerrard were all out preformed by each of those united players this season. if they are plodders then why is Roy taking players that cant even preform to a "plodders" standard?

  • Comment number 66.

    Regardless of all the hype, nonsense etc....... It's nice just to sit for 20 minutes and clearly understand every word our manager is saying.

  • Comment number 67.

    Why do people think we will qualify for the next World Cup, we should play this tournament as if it is our last, It could quite well be.

  • Comment number 68.

    Did anyone see Sturridge's performance against Liverpool in the league game after the cup final?? AWFUL

    That was his chance to a) prove to RDM that he should be seriously considered for a place in the CL final and b) to show Roy that he should be on the plane. It was at the business end of the season and the pressure was on and he failed miserably.

    Terry & Cahill play together for CFC so you can see his reasoning for trying to keep that combo going int he Euro's

    Remember he has picked his squad not his starting XI so everyone needs to get off the band wagon

    10 different players to the squad that went to SA so its not the same squad at all for those making generalisations

    As for the Stuart Lancaster comparison - the 6 nations is every single year, plus they have tests every year so on two occasions every year the RU international side playing serious and meaningful competitions plus friendlies. IF Lancaster was going to the World Cup he would not have picked the same squad - he has 4 years to blood and test those youngsters in serious comps but not major tournaments.

    Roy is going head first into the 2nd biggest tournament for the England team that only comes by every 4 years - so it is not the same situation and not really a fair comparison.

  • Comment number 69.

    Surely this tournament should be the last hurrah for the so called "Golden Generation" players.

    Roy should sit with Gerrard, Lampard,Cole and Terry after this tournament and explain taht he'll be looking at future players for the World Cup qualifying, if the youth does not get blooded we'll never win anything.

    The Team for WC qualifiers should be this


    Walcott/Lennon/Johnson - although he needs to leave City and play more
    Young/Oxlade-Chamberlain - If Downing contnues his form he should be no where near the squad


    Would also like to see Nathan Dyer and Scott Sinclair given some exposure as well.

  • Comment number 70.

    @ 51 King Red

    Take it next summer you'll still be having a go at King Kenny? Seems you are basing your opinion of Hodgson on his performance as Liverpool manager....anyway I don't want a debate on Liverpool.

    Crouch has to be gutted. The Ferdinand over Terry to me is a strange one. Perhaps he has based this on getting more out of Terry's pals in the squad. Young hasn't been at Old Trafford for long and Rooney aint playing first games.

  • Comment number 71.

    67: Why do people think we will qualify for the next World Cup, we should play this tournament as if it is our last, It could quite well be.
    How sad and negative can you get?!

  • Comment number 72.

    62.At 12:24 17th May 2012, swintondude wrote:

    I'm looking forward to it.....could be amusing to watch.

    Russia on the other hand have announced a "no surprises" squad.

  • Comment number 73.

    At 12:25 17th May 2012, AstroMan wrote:
    its spelt "Ejit" you ejit ;)

    and no i would not have had rednapp either but i also wouldnt have had Roy, stuart Pearce or Hoddle would have been better choices. unfortunatley the english FA dont have a clue...... and dont have the courage to re-install glen hoddle.

  • Comment number 74.

    It's a shame Hodgspn didn't choose Terry and Ferdinand, (even if both have had dodgy seasons) and crush that whining noise from the black racist lobby.
    A much bigger shame is leaving Micah Richards out, which I can't really understand. Also anyone who remembers Phil Jones' part in Man City's 6-1 game might worry about how he deals with real pressure. Glad to see Oxlade-Chamberlain in though!

    The bottom line, though, is that England look fluid, organised and genuinely entertaining to watch in this tournament. Hodgson ought to be ultimately judged on whether his team can achieve that. After all, even if England don't win the EC, a good team can always look forward to the future.

  • Comment number 75.

    I'm not being funny, but with this list of strikers... Holt should have gone. In fact failing that I would have taken Lambert from Southampton. The bloke has out performed holt in every league in England and is the best striker in the championship. When you consider the fact that Heskey has god knows how many caps for engand they both probably deserved a chance. Because lets be honest. Defoe Carrol and Crouch have not been playing, are low on confidence and are low on form. What happens for the first 2 games? we will need 2 wins to get out of that group. We are in trouble! I can only assume he is going walcott up front with carrol and oxlade on the wing? If only bale was english!

  • Comment number 76.

    Are we the common people missing something with Richards? Best English right back, can defend very well and attack even better, has even captained the premier league champions this season, yet has been overlooked by both Capello and now Hodgson. Seriously what are we missing!?

  • Comment number 77.

    At 12:27 17th May 2012, DP1982 wrote:

    @ 51 King Red

    Take it next summer you'll still be having a go at King Kenny?
    where did i have a go at KK? he's not even mentioned in No#51

  • Comment number 78.

    Roy Hodgson first squad for the Euros is uninspiring but then looking at the quality and depth of talent available to him in the Premiership I guess he could not have made it that much different to what he has picked. My first reaction to the squad was what a bunch of lighweights and has-beens, but then I had to scratch my head and think who else should go to the tournament and I came to the conclusion it did not matter because it would not make much difference. I fear that this wil be the tournament that shows the full impact of how the quality and availability of home grown English talent has been adversely affected by the huge number of overseas players that provide us with the the thrills of the Premiership week in and week out. Even more worrying for the national team is that I don't think the majority of football fans in England will even care as club is now far more important than country.
    Roy has got his work cut out and if he manages to get England through to the knockout stages then he can be considered to have done a good job under the circumstances. I wish him well and hope he has the full backing of the FA who really need to find a way of nurturing young English talent that can be brought through to play at the highest level possible.

  • Comment number 79.

    I can understand Ferdinand being left out. Even though he has had his best season for a while, it makes sense to take Terry due to his partnership with Cahill and Cole. Shame for Jagielka to miss out as he is a class act, but again although I'm unsure about Lescott (especially when he hasn't got Kompnay next to him), and due to the fact Jones can fill in at both CB and RB, it is understandable. Richards should be in the squad and Johnson should only be a back up. Richards can shoulder more responsibilty, is an absolute power house and better in the air and defensively. Across midfield, Barry shouldn't be in the team. His reliance on Toure was shown while he was absent at the nations cup earlier this year. Barry is a poor mans Parker, where as Carrick would offer something a little different. When Man Utd were at their best this season, the bulk of the time Carrick and Scholes were the two central midfielders, although I know thats not saying much. Downing shouldn't be anywhere near the team. Lennon, Johnson or even Joe Cole (who has been impressive abroad this season) would offer a lot more going forward. Also thought Sturridge could of been of use due to his flexibility in playing through the middle or out wide as he has for Chelsea this season.

    Having said all of this, I'm reserving my judgement to see how he pieces together the team. There's not much to choose from player wise so its more about getting the best out of the Rooneys, Gerrards etc rather than worrying about Downings inclusion as a sub (so long as he stays a sub)

  • Comment number 80.

    Richards is obviously missing something if he's overlooked twice now.

    Why oh why is Ox in there? Is he better than johnson, sturridge, lennon, sinclair? No.

  • Comment number 81.

    Somebody, please tell him to revise this squad list so that he can ommit Downing, and bring on Adam Johnson!

  • Comment number 82.

    80: Why oh why is Ox in there? Is he better than johnson, sturridge, lennon, sinclair? No.

  • Comment number 83.

    @ 77. I apologise if I'm stereotyping, but your average Liverpool fan has a go at Hodgson at every given opportunity. This must be based on his performance as Liverpool manager. KK didn't exactly set the world on fire... alas let's not go down this debate.

    Perhaps England won't be so bad with the pressure off? Seems like most England fans have written them off. I'd suggest their never as good as you think when confidence is high, and never as bad as you think when confidence is low. Perhaps fans of England should offer a little patience, get behind the manager (whoever that may be) and just enjoy being in the tournament.

  • Comment number 84.

    Overall I think it is a pretty solid squad, based on what we have available. Much has been made of Terry's off and on-field antics over the past few years, but based purely on football, are there any other reasonable selections to take ahead of him? I can't claim to like the guy, but picking a national side based on moral fibre is a dangerous game indeed. After all, have not the likes of Carroll, Cole, Rooney, etc all courted the wrong end of the newspaper at some stage? And let's face it, (at club level) Giggs hasn't exactly been a knight in shining armour, but he doesn't seem to attract the same level of vitriol as Terry. Mind you, should he be proven guilty of racial abuse after the Euros then that should be the end of him in my opinion, that is a criminal offence and is a completely different matter.

    Back to football though, I would have definately taken Lennon as I think he is a real threat either crossing from the right (which as improved immeasurably from years gone by) or cutting in and shooting (ditto). Little bemused with the Downing selection but then again who else is there? Possibly Johnson, although I would quite like to see Baines given the opportunity to play further forward, if Roy goes with a 4-4-2.

    Anyway, given the shallow pool of talent that he has to pick from in all positions (IMHO), I think it's about the best we could hope for. All the best Roy, I'll be supporting you and the boys come what may.

    My team (4-2-2-1-1):


    Jones Cahill Terry Cole

    Parker Lampard

    Young Baines


    Rooney/ Welbeck (first 2 games)

  • Comment number 85.

    Good shout for all those people asking for Scott sinclair to get a chance -

    It does not matter who is the manager - the players are not good enough and all the while we take the likes of Milner and Downing we will not succeed.

    Defoe has proved this year that he can score goals - always has proved it.

    One day they will find an answer to the question.... Why do Gerrard and Lampard have to play nearly 100 games before its noticed they do nothing in an England shirt!!!!!!!!

  • Comment number 86.

    'Chamberlain did well against Pirlo and Ambrosini of Milan' come on Roy get a grip thought you knew your Italian football??

    Lost some respect there

  • Comment number 87.


    It's not that much different from the last couple of tournaments - actually seems to be an improvement over the world cup to be honest.

    Bottom line is that folks are whining about which fringe players should have been taken like Downing/Johnson.

    Starting eleven then folks?


    Johnson Cahill Lescott Cole

    Barry Gerrard

    Milner Walcott Young


  • Comment number 88.

    At 12:36 17th May 2012, DP1982 wrote:
    im not a liverpool fan chum.

  • Comment number 89.

    78 - spot on.

    Too many managers unwilling to give youth players a game as the need to earn money in the short term seems to be far greater than breeding young players for the future

    For example I support Spurs and Harry plays Sandro when Parker is injured rather than Livermore who in my opinion is just as good and looks hungry to prove himself.

  • Comment number 90.

    Just Curious - was Scholes even considered for a 'swansong'?

  • Comment number 91.

    @ 88

    i'll get back in my box.

  • Comment number 92.

    Since we dont have a winter break the fact that some players have been in and out of their teams this season i think could well be a positive thing im hoping as these players will hopefully be fresher and will have a point to prove.

    Any thoughts on the matter ?

  • Comment number 93.


    Surely Gary Neville would have asked him?

  • Comment number 94.

    Thousands of us all know better. Good or bad lets give them our supoport, they're finished before weve started the competition. Im fed up of slagging the team off, it must affect the players when they see whats in the media. We can dream that some good will come out of this. When they pull on that England shirt and run on the pitch they are OUR players and we are the 12th Man..COME ON ENGLAND!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • Comment number 95.

    All this user's posts have been removed.Why?

  • Comment number 96.


    Good for you!

  • Comment number 97.

    Micah Richards must wonder what exactly he has to do to get near the England squad. To say he's better than Glenn Johnson is a bit of an understatement, the gulf in quality between the two is embarassing.

    I honestly can't understand why Downing has ever even won 1 cap nevermind the multiple ones he's got. Sure he's a left footed player but if your favoured foot is almost as useless as your other then what's the point? Adam Johnson shoudl have been in for him.

    Finally I would have taken Sturridge over Defoe who's played about ten minutes for Spurs all season.

  • Comment number 98.

    82.At 12:36 17th May 2012, Chris Dean wrote:
    80: Why oh why is Ox in there? Is he better than johnson, sturridge, lennon, sinclair? No.

    Based on what? Two good performances?

  • Comment number 99.

    My money is against Spain to win this year.

  • Comment number 100.

    At 12:36 17th May 2012, Chris Dean wrote:

    80: Why oh why is Ox in there? Is he better than johnson, sturridge, lennon, sinclair? No.


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