Euro 2012: Picking England's Starting 11
Soon Roy Hodgson will select the England squad he wants to take to Euro 2012. So, it will be interesting to see which players he wants to select for the first game. I suspect he will not put out many surprises and will select some tried and tested names. However, he does have to have one eye on the future.
And think about the players that might be taking over from some of our current experienced names. Wayne Rooney will be suspended for the first two games, so I suggest England move back to a 4-4-2 system for those games.
Joe Hart (Goalkeeper)
England currently has a lack of quality goalkeepers, so the decision to pick Joe Hart will be an easy one. The Manchester City keeper has had another excellent season, and he will be on a high after winning the Premier League title. He has certainly played his part with a string of excellent saves.
Kyle Walker (Right-Back)
Leighton Baines (Left-Back)
I know a lot of people would expect to see Ashley Cole in this position. But I personally believe Leighton Baines to be England's best left-back. He perhaps doesn't get the credit he deserves, but I would urge Hodgson to give him the opportunity from the start of Euro 2012.
Joleon Lescott (Central Defender)
I know that Lescott made a mistake that led to a QPR goal during Man City's thrilling 3-2 win. However, it is a long, hard season and mistakes do happen. Lescott has had a superb season at the heart of City's defense and has earned his place on the team.
John Terry (Central Defender)
Theo Walcott (Right Wing)
We all know what the Arsenal winger brings to the team. Walcott will be a powerful weapon for Hodgson to utilize at Euro 2012. His pace will surely scare European defenses and if he can get the delivery right, he could be one to watch.
Theo's sub role in Arsenal's final day 3-2 win at West Brom shows that he is fit and ready to be selected.
Ashley Young (Left Wing)
Ashley Young started off this season in superb fashion; it looked like a fine bit of summer business by Sir Alex Ferguson. I think it is fair to say that he has not finished the season as strongly. But he is an exceptional player with the ability to provide goals and assists.
Scott Parker (Central Midfield)
There is a slight doubt on the fitness of the Spurs midfielder, but if he is passed fit, then I'm sure he will be seen as the No. 1 choice in this position. Especially after recently captaining England.
If he isn't fit for the squad, then I would expect Hodgson would call on the experience of Manchester City midfielder Gareth Barry.
Frank Lampard (Central Midfielder)
Frank Lampard has had his share of injury problems this season. But if he is passed fit, I'm sure he will be in the squad. Hodgson will also see Lampard's experience as important to the team. I feel his chances of being in the team would be improved by using the 4-4-2 system.
The fact is, goal-scoring midfielders are very important and can make a big difference, so expect Lampard to be heavily involved in England's Euro 2012 campaign.
Jermain Defoe (Striker)
Daniel Sturridge (Striker)
Daniel Sturridge has been one of the brightest points of Chelsea's season. His 13 goals this season have played a big part. It would be interesting to see if Defoe and Sturrdige could work as a partnership, but England will need to find some sort of solution while Rooney is out.
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