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Hodgson frets over Cahill fitness

02 Jun 2012 21:17:21

Hodgson frets over Cahill fitness

England coach Roy Hodgson fears defender Gary Cahill will be ruled out of Euro 2012 with a broken jaw.

Cahill is having a CT scan on the injury, with the results expected to be known on Saturday night. Hodgson is crossing his fingers the results are positive. However, his initial worry after Cahill was shoved into goalkeeper Joe Hart by Dries Mertens during the early stages of the 1-0 win over Belgium at Wembley was that the Chelsea man was in trouble.

"I wasn't too happy about it (the challenge). 'Unfortunate' is too kind a word," Hodgson said. "When a striker is chasing a defender who is feeding a ball to the goalkeeper, those nudges and pushes take the defender into the goalkeeper."

He added: "It is something if you have been a goalkeeper you take very unkindly to. The referee gave him a yellow card, which he deserved. Unfortunately for us, the consequences might be a lot more than a yellow card because a fracture is a distinct possibility."

That would immediately rule Cahill out of Euro 2012, along with Gareth Barry and Frank Lampard, who have already fallen foul of the injury curse. As Hodgson brought his standby defender, Phil Jagielka, in for Barry, it will leave him with a major dilemma about who to select as another defender.

Liverpool's Marting Kelly is a clear possibility. However, that would mean Phil Jones covering a central defensive position, with Joleon Lescott the potential partner for John Terry when England open their Group D campaign against France in Donetsk on June 11 - even though both prefer to play on the left-hand side of defence.

Another option would be Rio Ferdinand, although the political sensitivities of that are clearly enormous.

"It is shortly after the game and we have won," he said. "After a good week at the Grove I don't want to get involved in discussing what I will do 'if' this happens. I will deal with it when the time comes."

In any case, Terry's fitness cannot be 100% guaranteed, even though Hodgson suspects a scan the Chelsea skipper will undergo on Sunday on a tight hamstring will prove no tournament-threatening damage.

"I suppose there is a slight worry about John Terry," Hodgson said. "We have worked quite hard this week and players are going to feel a bit tight in their muscles and he said he felt a slight tightening in his hamstring. That doesn't necessarily mean anything other than fatigue. But he will also have a scan tomorrow and I will have a definite answer after that."


PA

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