England v Chile: Rickie Lambert ruled out through injury as Roy Hodgson confirms Joe Hart will not start at Wembley
Daniel Sturridge is also likely to be rested as Hodgson keeps one eye on Tuesday's clash with Germany
Thursday 14 November 2013
England manager Roy Hodgson has confirmed that striker Rickie Lambert will not play in Friday’s international friendly against Chile after picking up a minor muscle injury which could also keep him out of match with Germany on Tuesday.
Lambert was named in the squad alongside his Southampton team-mates Adam Lallana and Jay Rodruguez, but he will not take part in the game at Wembley Stadium after Hodgson revealed the injury in a press conference earlier today.
Speaking at the Grove Hotel in Watford, where England are training due to a virus at their regular St George’s Park base, Hodgson also confirmed that regular goalkeeper Joe Hart will not start the match, although he will be among the substitutes as either John Ruddy or Fraser Forster will be given a run-out.
"It (Lambert's injury) happened yesterday in training," Hodgson confirmed. "It's not a massive injury but a muscle injury that will keep him out on Friday.
"Joe Hart won't be starting, you will have to work out for yourself which of the others won't."
Either Norwich's John Ruddy or Celtic's Fraser Forster could be handed a rare start, with the pair having just a single cap between them thanks to Ruddy's debut against Italy in August 2012.
"John was with us from the beginning and I have had time with him and have had Fraser with us for over a year," Hodgson explained. "I will make that decision on whether I choose both or one tomorrow."
Another who won’t feature on Friday night is in-form Liverpool striker Daniel Sturridge, who Hodgson says is likely to be rested until Tuesday night to face the Germans at the same stadium.
Lambert and Sturridge join a worryingly long injury list which includes captain Steven Gerrard and Manchester United duo Michael Carrick and Danny Welbeck, with the latter two pulling out of the squad completely.
In Gerrard’s absence, Frank Lampard will captain the side and he’ll receive a commemorative 100th cap before the game from his father Frank Lampard Senior and 1966 World Cup winner Geoff Hurst to celebrate the Chelsea midfielder making a century of appearances in England’s goalless draw with Ukraine in September.
"I don't want to get drawn into it (naming his team). I haven't spoken to the players about the team," the manager added.
"Frank knows and I have spoken to the Southampton boys and told them they will feature. That's all I'm going to say."
Lampard admitted it will be a special experience when he walks out tomorrow evening, as his two daughters Luna and Isla will be beside him as the match-day mascots before meeting his father, who will present him with a special golden cap.
"It will be very special obviously," said Lampard.
"The cap has been a long time coming. The idea of Sir Geoff was an FA idea that I was very happy with considering I've had links to all my life, my dad knowing him and what an England hero he is.
"I requested my dad be involved because there is not many international fathers and sons. It's the sort of thing he'd normally shy away from but with a bit of pressing he's managed to get out there. I think he will be a proud dad."
Lampard will captain ENgland on Friday in Gerrard's absence
Hodgson is planning on using the two matches, plus their next game in March, to finalise his plans for his squad that will head to Brazil for the 2014 World Cup, and he admitted that if it costs the Three Lions their unbeaten run, the so be it.
"I've got to put the performances in front of protecting an unbeaten run," he said.
"I do need in these two games to have a look at one or two players, as who Frank (Lampard) rightly said are heavily knocking on the door.
"There's only these two matches plus the one in March to do that. I can't dismiss the need to give some playing time to people we need to know more about.
"I'm not trying to play down the importance of winning games, but I'm not going to do it if it will be at the detriment to have a look at some players. I need to be wiser in March with regards to some players than I am now.
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