Rodgers gave Carroll reference

Carroll’s Liverpool future is in doubt following Rodgers’ arrival at Anfield with the Reds’ record signing having snubbed a move to West Ham and being linked with a return to Newcastle.

But the 23-year-old striker has been named in Hodgson’s squad for the international friendly in Berne after the England boss checked on the player’s form.

“I checked Andy out with Brendan Rodgers and Steven Gerrard because I realise there is a situation there,” said Hodgson.

“They were both happy with Andy in training and the way he is going about his business.”

Not starters

With the Manchester United pair of Wayne Rooney and Danny Welbeck not considered, Hodgson goes into the friendly with a trio of forwards – Carroll, Jermain Defoe and Daniel Sturridge – who are not regular starters at their clubs.

“We have to accept that a lot of our front players aren’t first choices at their clubs,” said Hodgson.

“There are a lot of foreign centre forwards at the big clubs in the Premier League so it’s not easy for our boys sometimes.

“But Andy Carroll did well when he played in the Euros and I have no worries putting him in this squad.”

It isn’t just the forwards who aren’t first-team regulars at their clubs. Tottenham midfielder Jake Livermore is perhaps the surprise name in the squad.

But Hodgson revealed that the 22-year-old also received good reports from the coaching staff at White Hart Lane.

“Jake did well at Tottenham last year,” added Hodgson.

“I had a long chat with Andre Villas-Boas and Tim Sherwood about him. They are impressed so it was a good chance to have a look for myself.

“A couple of players dropped out so Jake has been promoted up from the reserve list.”


It all adds up to an experimental England squad on the eve of a new football season that has crept up on many given the dominance of the London Olympics on the sporting calendar.

Hodgson has the challenge of getting the public excited about England’s underperforming footballers at a time when the country is feeling so proud of their Olympic heroes.

“I’d love to tap into the whole Olympic atmosphere,” said Hodgson.

“I’ve been really impressed by the whole organisation, the coaches and in particular the athletes, who have done an outstanding job.

“The impressive aspect is the manner in which they have won medals and embraced their victory.

“It’s been very refreshing to see talented people showing a good face to the nation and the world at large.

“The way that Team GB have conducted themselves in a home Olympics must make the world of athletics very pleased and proud.

“So many of them have done such a great PR job.”

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