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Liverpool and Southampton stars provide spine of England squad

Liverpool and Southampton have a combined eight players in Roy Hodgson’s chosen 23-man squad for the World Cup in Brazil this summer.

Hodgson has opted to take Saints front man Rickie Lambert ahead of West Ham’s Andy Carroll, with the Hammers striker consigned to stand by list having spent half of the season sidelined through injury.

The other Saints stars to have secured their place on the plane to Brazil are Luke Shaw and Adam Lallana, who have both hugely impressed in the Premier League this season.

Liverpool’s title challenging side was made up of a number of England stars, with Glen Johnson, Steven Gerrard, Jordan Henderson, Raheem Sterling and Daniel Sturridge all making the squad.

The squad in general wasn’t filled with many surprises, with just the exclusion of Michael Carrick perhaps the only real shock.

It is a relatively inexperienced squad with regards to major tournaments, with just six players in the 23 having previously played at a World Cup finals.

But Roy Hodgson doesn’t believe that is going to be a problem this summer: “You can only get the experience by being given the opportunity.

“Those six that have been there before, once upon a time, they didn’t have the experience either. It’s a catch 22 situation and we are aware that there are players in the squad who haven’t played their 50-odd games.

“But the balance is still quite good. For example, Glen Johnson has 50 caps Cahill, Jagielka, Baines, Hart, Gerrard, Rooney, all of these players have plenty of caps between them, so it would be wrong I think to focus totally on the fact that there are some out there who are young and less experienced.

And Hodgson admitted that it’s exciting to be able to pick young, up and coming talents such as Raheem Sterling and Jordan Henderson.

“They have imposed themselves upon me,” he admitted.

“I never set out to take them but I think they have played so well and been so effective in their club teams that they have imposed themselves and their ability on my thinking.

“You can’t ignore what people and doing on a week-to-week, day-to-day basis in their club sides. You don’t pick football teams on anything other than what’s happening at any particular time.”

Article title: Liverpool and Southampton stars provide spine of England squad

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