Hodgson believes future looks bright

Monday, 01, September, 2014
Roy Hodgson at Wembley

Roy Hodgson is certain England's future looks bright, despite their early elimination from the World Cup this summer.

The Three Lions boss named his first squad of the new season on Thursday with a friendly against Norway at Wembley and their opening European Qualifier away in Switzerland on the horizon.

England's 22-man squad has an average age of just 25 and also features four newcomers.

And though the international retirement of three members of the 100-cap club - Steven Gerrard, Frank Lampard and Ashley Cole - leaves Hodgson short of experience, he believes the current crop have the ability to step up and take their chance.

"I think there's great potential, and there's hope," said Hodgson.

"I'm hoping their development that over the next two years, in the club teams, with us, they will be stronger and better players than they are today and will go on and get the experience to be able to assume the responsibility [of playing for England].

"I can't wave the magic wand and bring back a leader in defence, with one or two in midfield and one or two up front. I can't replicate it because it doesn't exist.

"However disappointing the World Cup was, however bad the results were, however sad it was that we had to come back early, it's not a question of starting again.

"We're building and working along as a lot of those players were introduced into that World Cup squad."

He continued: "I believe in these players, I think they are going to be good enough - especially if they continue getting experience in their club teams. I think in 2016 we will see a good England team.

"I'm entitled to believe that."

Hodgson is also missing a number of players due to injury. Ross Barkley and Adam Lallana both impressed in their outings in Brazil, while Luke Shaw, Glen Johnson, Kieran Gibbs, Chris Smalling and Jon Flanagan are also absentees.

Tottenham Hotspur defender Danny Rose, Arsenal's Calum Chambers and Aston Villa's Fabian Delph are among the new faces the manager has brought in, while Newcastle United midfielder Jack Colback has also been given an opportunity to impress for his country after moving to the Magpies from Sunderland this summer.

"He is newer on our radar, but for Newcastle in the games I have seen he is very assured, he has a good left foot," Hodgson continued.

"His work rate and understanding of the game is good."


To purchase tickets for England v Norway at Wembley click here