Roy Hodgson set to name Wayne Rooney in England squad despite striker's row with Manchester United
Wilfried Zaha will also be included, while Andy Carroll is injured and there are doubts over Jermain Defoe's fitness
Roy Hodgson is set to name Wayne Rooney in his England squad, despite the fact that the unsettled Manchester United striker is yet to play a game for his club in pre-season other than one training ground match.
Rooney, the subject of two bids from Chelsea so far this summer, missed United's Tuesday night friendly in Stockholm with a shoulder injury. However, it is understood that Hodgson will include him in his squad to play Scotland on Wednesday even though there are doubts as to whether Rooney will feature in Sunday's Community Shield game against Wigan Athletic.
Hodgson has included Rooney's United team-mate Wilfried Zaha in his senior England squad for the match on Wednesday. The England manager will also take charge of the Under-21s, who play their Scottish counterparts at Bramall Lane on Tuesday night, for one match.
Rooney is determined to push through a move to Chelsea this summer and has so far played just once for United in pre-season, a behind-closed-doors friendly against Real Betis in which he sustained the injury.
Selecting Rooney is an interesting assertion of the England manager's resolve to do what is best for the national team despite the awkward situation that United and Rooney find themselves in. David Moyes has said Rooney's shoulder problem is “not too serious” which justifies Hodgson selecting the player and seeing how the injury plays out over the next few days.
Zaha, 20, has been included following positive reports to the England manager of his form in pre-season for Manchester United. He scored once for his new club on pre-season tour and given the shortage of options that Hodgson has in attack for the game, the striker will not be part of the Under-21s set-up.
The player has one England cap already, against Sweden in November, when he was a late addition to the squad following injuries before the trip to Stockholm. He came on in the last five minutes of the 4-2 defeat. He also played two of the three games in Stuart Pearce's doomed Under-21s European championship campaign.
Andy Carroll is injured and there are doubts over Jermain Defoe's fitness. Daniel Sturridge has only recently returned to full training with Liverpool. Frank Lampard was a contender to play for Chelsea overnight against Real Madrid and will almost certainly play on Saturday in the club's final pre-season friendly against Roma following his Achilles injury.
Hodgson has changed his arrangements for next week to accommodate his additional one-off role as coach of the Under-21s who play their Scottish counterparts at Bramall Lane on Tuesday night. He will discuss both squads at Wembley and then give his pre-match press conference on Monday rather than Tuesday ahead of the senior game next week.
As Voltaire once said, “Ice cream is exquisite. What a pity it isn’t illegal”
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