England must look to the future - Hodgson
Hodgson has accepted Ferdinand's decision to quit the international scene with a sense of relief given the 34-year-old has dominated so much of his time in charge of the Three Lions without actually playing a game.
"We don't need to keep shackling ourselves with what we have with these great players in the past," he said. "We have to take a chance elsewhere."
He added: "It's a time to move forward. It's time for me to get behind the players who will be the ones to take us to Brazil."
Smalling will not be going to Brazil for this summer's friendly in Rio de Janeiro, though, having been ruled out through injury, which probably means a call-up for Joleon Lescott, even though the Manchester City man has struggled to get a game in the final weeks of the campaign.
"But the worry is that the older players have been in tournaments in their best years and still not pulled it off.
"We have a lot of talented players. Jack Wilshere has played 113 minutes in over a year for me but he has a great future.
"Theo Walcott, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, Tom Cleverley, Danny Welbeck, Phil Jones, Chris Smalling, plus the under-21 team with Jordan Henderson, who has come on. We also have Wilfried Zaha, Raheem Sterling, Nathaniel Chalobah and Thomas Ince so we aren't short."
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