Frank Lampard believes that Rio Ferdinand is “not finished” as an England player.
The Manchester United centre-back pulled out of the Three Lions’ squad for the up-coming World Cup qualifying ties with San Marino and Montenegro, citing a personal training regime as his reason for doing so.
This snubbing of Roy Hodgson’s call has led some to peculate that Ferdinand’s days playing for the national team are over.
But, Lampard doesn’t think that the 34-year-old’s time in the national set-up is finished and that he could return at a later date:
“He is a top drawer player and he is certainly not finished,” he told Sky Sports.
“I don’t know the ins and outs of his future and where it is going, but the way he is playing at the minute, he is one of the top defenders in the Premier League for sure.”
Ferdinand’s withdrawal leaves England short of defensive cover, with Hodgson sweating on the fitness of Gary Cahill.
Joleon Lescott, Chris Smalling, Steven Caulker and Newcastle’s Steven Taylor have all been included in the squad, and Lampard is confident that there is adequate cover:
“These are the moments when you need a strong squad.” He said.
“It does happen in a funny way that you lose three or four players from the same position and that would test any squad, but we are very fortunate that we have got some very good young players and it will be time for them to stand up, and I am sure they can because they do it regularly.
England face minnows San Marino in the first of their clashes, and Lampard recognises that there is a need to be professional in order to achieve the desired result:
“It is a game to be professional, where you are expected to win comfortably and don’t get much credit whatever the result.
“If we are disciplined and go about our job in the right way, then with the quality we have in our team with those attacking players you’d want to get the right result.”
[cat_link cat=”england” type=”grid”]