Injuries force Jermain Defoe and Michael Carrick out of Brazil game

Daniel Sturridge also in doubt for Wembley friendly as Steven Gerrard awarded England player of year

Roy Hodgson lost Jermain Defoe and Michael Carrick to injury today ahead of England's friendly against Brazil on Wednesday with Daniel Sturridge another major doubt.

The senior squad gathered at St George's Park for the inaugural England players award tonight along with members of the 24 Football Association representative teams, including the under-21s, womens' and disability sides.

The award went to the England captain Steven Gerrard with Danny Welbeck second and Ashley Cole placed third. Hodgson is planning to make up call-ups today with Andy Carroll and Scott Parker in the frame.

The under-21s coach Stuart Pearce has lost Phil Jones, Raheem Sterling, Joe Bennett and Nathaniel Clyne to injury and illness from his squad. His side play Sweden tomorrow at Walsall.

Defoe came off in the first half of Tottenham's 1-0 win over West Bromwich Albion yesterday. Andre Villas-Boas said the striker "rolled his ankle" stretching for a ball in a challenge with Shane Long.

The club do not know the extent of Defoe's injury until the player has a scan today. Defoe will be out for "two-three weeks" at worst, Villas-Boas said.

Carrick sustained an injury to his hip in Saturday's win over Fulham, according to the club. Brendan Rodgers said that Sturridge was injured in Liverpool's draw at the Etihad Stadium.

Sturridge took a knock to his thigh just before half time, after crowning an excellent first half display with a superb goal from 30 yards. He told Rodgers at the interval that he wanted to play on but was in obvious discomfort when withdrawn in the game's last minute. "He is with the medics at the moment. England may wish to look at it but he is struggling at the moment," Rodgers said.

Their opponents, Brazil, have fewer selection worries ahead of the friendly. In the first match of his second stint with Brazil, head coach Luiz Felipe Scolari could find no space in a 20-man squad for stars including Real Madrid midfielder Kaka, showing a strength in depth in the squad that has impressed England manager Roy Hodgson.

"That's how it should be if you are the manager of a top footballing nation," Hodgson said. "A country like ours should have a couple of good choices in each position. The Brazilians certainly do.

"I'm looking at their squad and there's probably another 10 or 12 that we could name that could easily have got in there ... it might be nice one day if all our discussions focused around how you have two fantastic left-backs, three fantastic right-backs, eight fantastic centre-backs."

Brazil's only absence through injury is the Lazio midfielder Hernanes, who will miss the match because of a head injury suffered in an Italian Cup match last week.

The Queen's Park Rangers goalkeeper Julio Cesar, along with Chelsea's David Luiz, Ramires and Oscar make up the Premier League contingent in Scolari's squad.

Comments