England boss Hodgson to include bench players in the World Cup squad
England manager Roy Hodgson claims he will not select his 23-man squad for the World Cup on the basis of first team appearances. The Three Lions boss has hinted that he would also give opportunities to players on the bench.
Hodgson is currently preparing a 29-man squad for friendly with Denmark at Wembley on Wednesday. Hodgson is keen on keeping all top English talents in his team, whether they have broken into the first team or are still making bench appearances.
The players that will benefit the most from this Chelsea veteran Ashley Cole and Frank Lampard, both of whom have recently been placed in the second string team. Manchester United youngster Danny Welbeck and Tom Cleverley are no longer in Manchester United’s first team as well, so they will benefit from this as well.
Hodgson claims he was well aware of this issue when he assumed charge of being the England coach. The former Liverpool manager also admitted that this was a problem he had been dealing with since he arrived at the helm.
“There is a trail of thought that the players who do play every week will by piling up the games,” Hodgson said. “In my whole time with the national team I have always had to come to terms with the fact that, because especially our young players, play at top clubs they don't make their way into the starting line-up.
“I haven't had a hard and fast rule, I have never said I won’t choose a player because he hasn't got a place in his club team at the moment, I have tried to choose players on their qualities and what they can do for us. Of the 29 there are a few who aren't playing regularly but I don't think they feel disadvantaged by that.”
Hodgson admitted he understood Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho had a hard time picking the best 11 players from his squad and because of that sometimes players like left back Cole were left out of the team, but that didn’t mean they were no longer useful talents.
Hodgson also revealed that he wasn’t going to make any fringe players a star in his new team. Hodgson has recently included the Southampton players Adam Lallana, Jay Rodriguez, Rickie Lambert and Luke Shaw to his squad, but has stepped short of making them regulars in the first-team.