Photo: GETTY IMAGES
Roy Hodgson will advise his England
players not to follow Wayne
Rooney’s example and book a pre-World Cup break in Las Vegas.
Rooney travelled to Vegas before Euro 2012 and the trip was blamed for the
fact he failed to make an impact on the tournament after returning from
England manager Hodgson claims he cannot police his players ahead of this
summer’s World Cup in Brazil, but will urge them against long-haul breaks.
“If I’m not careful, I will be treating all the players like children and
telling them what they can and can’t do in their spare time,” Hodgson said.
“But I certainly wouldn’t encourage them to go that far away, no.
“My advice will be if you are going to go away with your family, keep it much
closer to home and avoid the very, very long journeys. But whether or not I
go as far as to say ‘if you’ve booked a holiday to Las Vegas, then you can
forget a place in my 23’, I’m not sure I’ll go that far.”
Speaking on the Footballers’ Football Show England special on Sky Sports 1,
Hodgson revealed he would ask seven players to go to England’s World Cup
training camp to Portugal in the knowledge they were not part of his final
The England manager will name a squad of 30 players, but immediately tell
seven of them that they will only be part of the 23 who go to Brazil in the
event of injuries.
The seven players will travel with Hodgson’s first-choice 23 to the Portugal
training camp on May 19 and only be released after England’s send-off
friendly against Peru at Wembley on May 30. Hodgson hinted that his system
will favour good characters, such as Liverpool midfielder Jordan Henderson.
“I reserve the right to change my mind, but what I think I will do is to take
30 players to Portugal and keep them until such time as we play Peru,”
Hodgson said. “But what I think I will do is to name 23 and name the seven
who are coming with us, and make it clear to them that, at the moment, they
are not going to be in the final 23.
“I think that it’s going to be very disappointing for those seven players.
Whichever way. When I name 23 and I say, ’you seven are coming with us as
well’, I’ve got to say, ’you’re not in the 23, but I still want you with us’.
“We’re taking 30 players with us. It’s just that the seven will know that in
my thinking, they aren’t actually in the squad and they’ve got to go there
as if you like to call them, a standby player. It will make certain that if
anything did happen, these players would be fit when they’re called back in
again. I’d rather do that, than name players on standby and leave them out
of it. I’d rather have them with us for a while.
“They won’t be happy to hear they’re not in the 23, but, unfortunately, there
is no easy way to break somebody’s heart.”
Hodgson will also name a bigger than usual 30-man squad on Thursday for the
friendly against Denmark at Wembley on March 5.
“On this particular occasion, we’ll name a bigger squad than we normally do,”
Hodgson said. “Because even though the focus I guess, is still always
Denmark, we also want to introduce, if you like, some of the ideas that
we’ve got with regards to going to Brazil, introduce the players to the idea
of how we’re going to go about things logistically, what they can be looking
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