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England’s European Championship Squad – The Debate

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New England manager Roy Hodgson today confirmed the 23 man squad he will take to Poland and Ukraine for the European Championships next month, and it wasn’t an announcement without controversy and debate. It began with the farce of the squad slowly being leaked before the set time when it was supposed to become general knowledge, and ended with #HodgsonOut already trending on Twitter before the mid-afternoon. So, just what are the calls that has got everybody talking?

England Squad for the Euro’s –

Goalkeepers – Hart, Green, Ruddy
Defenders – Johnson, Jones, Terry, Lescott, Cahill, Cole, Baines
Midfielders – Parker, Barry, Milner, Gerrard, Lampard, Walcott, Oxlade-Chamberlain, Young, Downing
Forwards – Rooney, Welbeck, Defoe, Carroll

There are three main areas of debate to be considered, and we’ll offer a judgment of how we think the new man in charge has called it.

John Terry vs Rio Ferdinand

It’s such a difficult call to make, but Hodgson has stated he’s made the call based purely on ‘footballing reasons’ and if that is the case, to us it looks like he’s made the right call, albeit it just. There were arguments for the inclusion – and exclusion – of both central defenders, but the logic does decree that is should be the Chelsea man taking his place on the plane. Ferdinand has played just once for England since missing out on the World Cup in 2010 due to injury, and it seems right that Terry should be given the chance to compete in the tournament he helped qualify for. At 33, there are also question marks over how many games Ferdinand can manage in a short space of time, such is the way International tournaments are structured.

Form vs Reputation

So, Andy Carroll has made the squad based upon two good performances in recent weeks. In all honesty, until his recent games against Chelsea, he had been very poor in the Premiership this season, and at times struggled to even make a floundering Liverpool side. While there is an argument for Hodgson taking those players in good form, it highlights a horrific sense of in-consistency throughout the squad. Stuart Downing is picked with a total of 0 goals, and 0 assists this season in 36 Premiership game. It is astonishing that a player with such stats can be selected to represent his county on one of the biggest stages of all. Furthermore, Steven Gerrard is named as captain despite having barely played this season, and being distinctively average in most of the games he has featured in. Players who have had good seasons, like Michael Carrick, Grant Holt and even Swansea duo Danny Graham and Scott Sinclair have been left out in the hope that these players can re-live their past glories. Yet, Carroll has been included on almost the complete opposite grounds. Where’s the logic in that one, Roy?

The Oxlade-Chamberlain Gaffe 

Given all the other controversy, it wouldn’t have been complete without a live on air blunder from the new manager. Upon being asked about the Arsenal youngsters inclusion, Hodgson responded by stating he had seen Oxlade-Chamberlain ‘deal very well with’ Pirlo and Ambrosini when Arsenal met AC Milan at the Emirates. The only slight issue with this, is that it is an impossible scenario. Pirlo transfered to Juventus last Summer, and Ambrosini wasn’t even on the bench for the game. So, being live at the game, just what did Roy Hodgson really see? It seems as though this horrific error highlights the lack of serious thought gone into the selection. Perhaps it’s understandable given the way that he was West Brom manager until Saturday, but maybe that’s a reason why the FA shouldn’t have given him the job? Either way, he completely made up that he’d seen Chamberlain play against Pirlo and Ambrosini, for it simply never happened. Nobody is really complaining about the inclusion of the 18 year old, but the rational thought process behind it would appear to not exist.

ThisIsFutbol’s England Squad –

Goalkeepers – Hart, Green, Ruddy
Defenders – Richards, Johnson, Terry, Lescott, Cahill, Cole, Baines
Midfielders – Parker, Barry, Gerrard, Lampard, Carrick, Walcott, Sinclair, Johnson
Forwards – Rooney, Defoe, Welbeck, Holt, Sturridge

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