Andy Carroll to start for England but Jack Wilshere ruled out

Click to follow
The Independent Football

Newcastle striker Andy Carroll will make his England debut against France tomorrow, Fabio Capello confirmed today.

The 21-year-old trained today after sitting out yesterday's session with a slight injury and will start alongside Sunderland's Jordan Henderson, who also wins his first cap, and Arsenal's Kieran Gibbs.

"He's okay. He's fit. He'll play tomorrow," Capello said of Carroll.

"He'll start in the first XI along with Henderson and Gibbs."

One player who definitely will not play is Jack Wilshere, who is to return to Arsenal with an injury.

But the Italian was more hopeful about Phil Jagielka and Joe Hart, who also missed training today.

He said: "Wilshere is going home. Jagielka has flu but we think he will be okay tomorrow.

"Hart, the doctor is waiting to decide what happened. We think it will not be a big problem for him."

Asked whether he was concerned about allegations surrounding Carroll's private life, he said: "No. I think you have to help him because he made a mistake but he is really young.

"I think everyone makes mistakes during their life and you have to help the young ones.

"He's a good player and I think he will understand, to stay with the senior (squad) will be really important for him because all the people, the newspapers, journalists will be focused on his life. I think he will improve."

Capello admits Carroll will take on more responsibility as a senior England player.

"Yes, I hope so," said the Italian. "He needs to improve things in his private life now because it's really important.

"I spoke with him about what you have to do on the pitch (this morning). This afternoon I will speak to him about his private life.

"I didn't select him in the last game we played because the FA, myself and Stuart Pearce decided it was not okay to select him. I think this was really important for him and for us. Since them I think he learned something about this."

Capello also spoke in praise of another new cap, Henderson, and urged the crowd to support the emerging players even if they find it difficult to adjust to senior international football immediately.

"The three players (Carroll, Henderson and Gibbs), we have to support them if the performances are not okay," he said. "It's really, really important. Also, the senior players like Rio Ferdinand, Gareth Barry and Steven Gerrard have to help these players."

Captain Rio Ferdinand believes France's defence will have a tough task on their hands dealing with debutant Carroll.

"I think he's done fantastic," said Ferdinand. "He's a real talent - someone who's going to make it awkward for opponents to play against.

"Newcastle have got a fantastic player on their hands."

Ferdinand is delighted to see new blood being injected into the England squad.

"It's fantastic," he said. "There's nothing better than seeing a young lad get his first cap.

"I look back to when I made my debut and it's one of the proudest moments of your life - all your family are there.

"I hope they go out and enjoy it and play the way they have for their clubs."

Ferdinand has no concerns about Capello being forced to throw youngsters in as injuries mount up.

"It's part and parcel of playing for England," he said. "People keep talking about injuries but that opens the door to someone else.

"We've got a lot of young players who are hungry and want to come in and do well.

"With these young players, we've got full confidence and we back them to the hilt. You can see in the way they train (they are ready), I was speaking to Jordan earlier and they are not fazed, these young lads. The best thing is they know each other from coming through the under-21s. They are loving it."

Comments