Tag Archives: minnows

Gary Cahill out of England against San Marino

Taylor called up to replace crocked Cahill as England's defensive crisis deepens after Ferdinand farce

By
David Kent

PUBLISHED:

09:58 GMT, 19 March 2013

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UPDATED:

10:19 GMT, 19 March 2013

Gary Cahill has joined the list of England casualties after being ruled out of Friday's clash with San Marino.

Cahill hurt his knee during Chelsea's win over West Ham at the weekend and will play no part against the minnows in Rimini.

Manager Roy Hodgson, who has already lost Rio Ferdinand and Michael Dawson and brought in Joleon Lescott and Steven Caulker, has called up uncapped Newcastle centre-half Steven Taylor.

Crocked: Gary Cahill picked up an injury during Chelsea's win over West Ham and will miss out for England

Crocked: Gary Cahill picked up an injury during Chelsea's win over West Ham and will miss out for England

Fitness fight: England defender Cahill will be reassessed before Tuesday's crunch clash with Montenegro

Fitness fight: England defender Cahill will be reassessed before Tuesday's crunch clash with Montenegro

An FA statement read: 'Chelsea
defender Gary Cahill has been ruled out of England’s World Cup qualifier
with San Marino on Friday evening.

'Cahill
was assessed by England medical staff on Monday and will not be able to
take part in the match, but will be reassessed later in the week with a
view to the second of England’s two qualifiers, against Montenegro on
Tuesday.'

Taylor earns his call-up on the back
of a string of fine performances for the Magpies. He has represented
England at every level from Under 16 through to Under 21 and earned a
place in the full squad for a friendly against Germany in 2007.

More to follow…

SOS: Newcastle defender Steven Taylor has been called in to the England squad by boss Roy Hodgson

SOS: Newcastle defender Steven Taylor has been called in to the England squad by boss Roy Hodgson

Arsenal lose to Bradford in the Capital One League Cup

Humiliating new low for Wenger as Arsenal's best hope of ending trophy drought is wrecked in penalty shootout by Bradford… the League Two minnows with a team that cost just 7,500

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UPDATED:

08:13 GMT, 12 December 2012

Bradford 1 Arsenal 1 (aet, 3-2 on pens)
For Bradford City – a club so long lost in the foothills of football's obscene money mountain – there will be a Capital One Cup semifinal and a shot at some real winter glory.

For sorry old Arsenal, there is only more failure and more ignominy. Seven-and-a-half years it has been since the Gunners and their manager Arsene Wenger laid their hands on something tangible.

With Christmas yet to come and go, only the FA Cup and Champions League remain after one more humiliation on a lengthening list.

How the penalty shootout drama unfolded…

Shootout

We've done it: Bradford City players led by Blair Turgott (right) and Gary Jones (left) run to congratulate their goalkeeper

We've done it: Bradford City players led by Blair Turgott (right) and Gary Jones (left) run to congratulate their goalkeeper

Jubilation: Bradford's players celebrate after Thomas Vermaelen hits the post, handing them the victory

Jubilation: Bradford's players celebrate after Thomas Vermaelen hits the post, handing them the victory

Millionaires v minnows… Bradford's win was all the more dramatic because their team cost just 7,500 – compared to the 66.8m sum of Arsenal's side
BRADFORD

Matt Duke FREE
Stephen Darby FREE
Carl McHugh FREE
Rory McArdie FREE
James Meredith FREE
Garry Thompson FREE
Nathan Doyle FREE
Gary Jones FREE
Will Atkinson FREE
James Hanson 7,500
Nahki Wells FREE

TOTAL 7,500

ARSENAL

Wojciech Szczesny FREE
Bacary Sagna 6m
Per Mertesacker 8m
Thomas Vermaelen 10m
Kieran Gibbs FREE
Francis Coquelin FREE
Santi Cazorla 16m
Aaron Ramsey 5m
Jack Wilshere FREE
Lukas Podolski 11m
Gervinho 10.8m

TOTAL 66.8m

And this really was a humiliation.
Bradford City may have won on penalties but that only tells part of the
story. In truth, the team from League Two were superior to their
Barclays Premier League opponents for much of the night.

Ultimately, this will be remembered
as the first time Arsenal lost to opposition from the fourth tier since
the 1992 FA Cup defeat at Wrexham.

As such, there will be another inquest at the Emirates this week and rightly so. It is not good enough and Wenger knows it.

In this forgotten corner of West
Yorkshire, though, they wi l l celebrate and look forward to a January
windfall, maybe even a February trip to Wembley.

It is hard not to feel pleased for
them. Leading through a first-half goal from Garry Thompson – recently
of Scunthorpe and a veteran of 10 years at Morecambe – it took a
half-time rollicking from Wenger that was so loud it was heard in the
Bradford dressing room and a header from Thomas Vermaelen two minutes
from the end of normal time, to deny Bradford and breathe life into
Arsenal.

Blushes spared: Thomas Vermaelen headed the equaliser for Arsenal to take the tie to extra time

Blushes spared: Thomas Vermaelen headed the equaliser for Arsenal to take the tie to extra time

Shock: Garry Thompson put Bradford a goal up against Arsenal

Shock: Garry Thompson put Bradford a goal up against Arsenal

Delight: Vermaelen (left) and Jack Wilshere celebrate after the equaliser

Delight: Vermaelen (left) and Jack Wilshere celebrate after the equaliser

Helpless: Thompson put the ball into the back of the net

Helpless: Thompson put the ball into the back of the net

How Gervinho somehow skewed a gilt-edged chance to equalise

How Gervinho somehow skewed a gilt-edged chance to equalise

MATCH FACTS

Bradford: Duke, Darby, Meredith, McHugh, McArdle, Thompson (Jones 72), Atkinson (Turgott 92), Jones, Doyle, Hanson, Wells (Connell 74)

Subs not used: McLaughlin, Good, Ravenhill, Hines

Goal: Thompson 16

Booked: Wells, Doyle, Hanson

Arsenal: Szczesny, Sagna, Mertesacker, Vermaelen, Gibbs, Wilshere, Ramsey (Rosicky 69), Cazorla, Coquelin (Chamakh 60), Podolski (Oxlade-Chamberlain 69), Gervinho

Subs not used: Mannone, Squillaci, Jenkinson, Arteta

Goal: Vermaelen 88

Booked: Gervinho, Vermaelen

Referee: Mike Dean

Attendance: 23,971

After surviving some pressure from
their illustrious visitors in added time, though, Bradford progressed
courtesy of the shoot-out.

Remarkably, they have now won their
last nine penalty contests. Santi Cazorla and Marouane Chamakh did not
exactly exhibit the best body language as they ambled up to take
Arsenal's first two kicks.

Sure enough, the former saw his shot
saved by Matt Duke while the latter struck a post. No doubt struggling a
little with nerves, Bradford did falter, too. Nathan Doyle and Gary Jones scored
Bradford's first two penalties while Alan Connell converted the fourth.

But either side of that kick, Stephen Darby and Ritchie Jones saw weak
shots saved, meaning that the shoot-out would have gone to sudden death
had Vermaelen beaten Duke with Arsenal's fifth.

The Arsenal captain could only
strike a firm shot against the post, however, meaning that in the week
they face expulsion from the FA Cup for fielding an ineligible player,
Bradford are a two-legged semifinal away from a day at Wembley.

Ambitious: Thompson kicks the ball over his head

Ambitious: Thompson kicks the ball over his head

Cheer up, Arsene: Wenger looked frustrated during the match

Cheer up, Arsene: Wenger looked frustrated during the match

Wenger was a little short of patience
when it was put to him that this was rather embarrassing. He had, after
all, fielded something approaching his strongest team.

It is only embarrassing if you do
not try, was the gist of his message. This setback, though, belongs on a
different scale to recent disappointments against teams like Swansea.

This was Bradford of League Two and if Wenger does not feel genuinely uncomfortable this morning then he should.

Tussle: Santi Cazorla (right) and Nathan Doyle vie for possession

Tussle: Santi Cazorla (right) and Nathan Doyle vie for possession

Warm enough Mikel Arteta (left) and the rest of Arsenal's substitutes look freezing on the bench

Warm enough Mikel Arteta (left) and the rest of Arsenal's substitutes look freezing on the bench

Bradford manager Phil Parkinson
summed things up well when he said: 'It's a shame the headlines will be
about the penalties because I think we deserved to win in normal time.
We were only two or three minutes away from beating their best team.'

In truth, a Bradford win looked to be
on the cards from the moment Thompson crashed Parkinson's team into the
lead after 16 minutes.

Vermaelen obstructed the dangerous
Nahki Wells by the right corner flag to concede a free-kick and when
Gary Jones' cross was flicked on to the far post, Thompson volleyed home
with his left instep.

Entering the fray: Arsene Wenger walks onto the pitch before the match

Entering the fray: Arsene Wenger walks onto the pitch before the match

Arsenal tried to respond but Francis Coquelin struck a post from 18 yards and Gervinho failed to make contact from a yard out.

In the second half, Arsenal improved.
Bradford goalkeeper Duke only had to work sporadically, though, and the
surprise was not that Arsenal's equaliser came so late but that it came
at all.

They really had been that
unconvincing. Once they had their lifeline, Wenger's team were somewhat
better. They should have scored in extra time as Bradford tired but Jack
Wilshere dallied when clean through and Cazorla hit the bar.

This Arsenal team has no killer
instinct. In fact it has little or no instinct at all. Pretty soon, it
may have no season left, either.

All smiles: Bradford manager Phil Parkinson was delighted with the victory

All smiles: Bradford manager Phil Parkinson was delighted with the victory

IT'S NOT THE FIRST TIME…

Walsall 2 Arsenal 0, 1933
Arsenal were regarded as the best team in Europe, Walsall were in the Third Division South when they met in the third round of the FA Cup, but produced what Sportsmail then called 'the sensation of the century'.

Swindon 3 Arsenal 1, 1969
Having lost to Leeds in the League Cup final the year before, Arsenal wanted to atone. Instead, Third Division Swindon stunned a muddy Wembley, Don Rogers netting twice in extra-time.

York City 1 Arsenal 0, 1985
Third Division York put the Gunners out in the fourth round of the FA Cup with a late Keith Houchen penalty.

Wrexham 2 Arsenal 1, 1992
The champions were hot favourites for a thirdround FA Cup tie but captain Mickey Thomas hit a stunning late free-kick leveller and Steve Watkin won it for Wrexham.

PS And the Bantams pull their weight in penalty shootouts…

Bradford have now been successful in their last nine spotkick deciders.

October 6 2009 3-2 Notts County

November 10 2009 5-4 Port Vale

August 30 2011 3-1 Sheffield Wed

October 4 2011 4-3 Huddersfield

November 8 2011 6-5 Sheffield Utd

October 9 2012 3-2 Hartlepool

October 30 2012 4-2 Wigan

November 13 2012 4-2 Northampton

December 112012 3-2 Arsenal

FA Cup second round: Harrogate and Hastings one game away from Premier League payday

Old Trafford, Anfield and Stamford Bridge all await… but first minnows must get through FA Cup second round ties

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UPDATED:

14:49 GMT, 30 November 2012

Harrogate Town manager Simon Weaver is refusing to put pressure on his side as they prepare for their FA Cup second-round tie against Hastings.

A potentially mouth-watering match-up against a Premier League club awaits the Conference North team if they can beat fellow non-leaguers Hastings, who are the lowest-ranked team through to this stage of the competition.

'A lot of people have tried to put words in my mouth saying 'You should go through',' Weaver told the Yorkshire Evening Post.

One win from the big boys: The Chelmsford City players celebrate their win over Colchester and will face Crawley

One win from the big boys: The Chelmsford City players celebrate their win over Colchester and will face Crawley

'But we've gone to a new level here. The club's never been this far in the FA Cup and everything here on in should be treated as a bonus.

'Obviously, we'd be disappointed if we lost but we've still achieved something here.

'We should take heart and confidence into the game and enjoy the moment.

'Obviously, we know we'd enjoy it more if we win and that's what we're going out to achieve but there's no pressure.'

Sheffield United boss Danny Wilson believes his players should continue to express themselves on the pitch, even if it means they could miss out on crucial games through suspension.

Blades midfielder Kevin McDonald will miss Saturday's tie against npower League Two side Port Vale at Bramall Lane after he earned his fifth yellow card of the season against Brentford.

Looking for the cutting edge: Sheffield United boss Danny Wilson will hope his side can overcome Port Vale

Looking for the cutting edge: Sheffield United boss Danny Wilson will hope his side can overcome Port Vale

Wilson said: 'We never tell the players about the number of bookings they are currently on because we wouldn't want it to affect their displays.

'Sometimes you could tell a player not to do something, ie make a tackle, to avoid getting booked but ultimately you are in the hands of the referee and their interpretation.

'We want the lads to express themselves and play their natural games. We will deal with what happens in terms of suspensions.'

Sheffield United will also be without Mark Howard (thigh), Dave Kitson (hamstring) and Lecsinel Jean-Francois (knee) while Vale could hand a start to recent signing Calvin Andrew alongside Tom Pope in attack.

Preston take on Gillingham at Deepdale and captain John Mousinho is hoping to go on another decent cup run as he has done at some of his former clubs.

Mousinho told the Lancashire Evening Post: 'The FA Cup is a competition I like.
'Stevenage got to the fifth round last season and played Tottenham, taking them to a replay.

Fight on their hands: John Mousinho and his Preston side take on Kieran Richardson

Fight on their hands: John Mousinho and his Preston side take on Kieran Richardson

'The season before that I was in their side which beat Newcastle 3-1 – that was obviously a big occasion.

'When I was at Brentford they got to the fourth round. We beat Sunderland in the third round and then got Charlton, who were a Premier League side at the time.

'That season was the early part of my professional career and the FA Cup run certainly made an impression on me.'

Elsewhere, MK Dons host Wimbledon in what is set to be an emotionally-charged match while Lincoln face Mansfield, Accrington take on Oxford, Barrow host Macclesfield and Bury take on Southend.

League One's Carlisle play Bournemouth while Morecambe travel to Coventry and Chelmsford will be looking to get the better of Crawley.

Crewe will look to book their place in the third round with a win over Burton while Fleetwood play Aldershot, Luton host Dorchester, Oldham play Doncaster and Rotherham face Notts County.

The other games see Tranmere at home to Chesterfield and Alfreton host Leyton Orient.

Celtic beating Barcelona is up there with the greatest European nights

We had become fodder for minnows… so beating Barca ranks as my greatest ever night as a Celtic fan. It's as good as it gets

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UPDATED:

12:10 GMT, 8 November 2012

As a child, I was spoiled rotten. Celtic had been European champions just a little too early for me to claim I could remember it, but by the mid-1970s I expected them to reach the semi-finals of Europe’s premier competition more often than not, and took it for granted that they would win it again one of those seasons.

The descent from European Cup contention in the Seventies via Cup-Winners’ Cup and UEFA Cup mediocrity in the Eighties reached its nadir with a 5-1 defeat at Neuchatel Xamax in the early 1990s.

We had become fodder for minnows.

Signed, sealed, delivered: Tony Watt keeps his cool to score Celtic's second goal against Barcelona

Signed, sealed, delivered: Tony Watt keeps his cool to score Celtic's second goal against Barcelona

Main man: Watt celebrates with his team-mates as Celtic record a shock win over the Spanish giants

Other Celtic nights of glory…

November 12 1969: Celtic 3 Benfica 0. (Benfica won the return leg by the same score and Celtic went through on the toss of a coin.)

April 1 1970: Leeds 0 Celtic 1

April 5 1970: Celtic 2 Leeds 1

5 March 1980: Celtic 2 Real Madrid 0

31 October 2001: Celtic 4 Juventus 3

20 March 2003: Liverpool 0 Celtic 2

11 April 2004: Celtic 1 Barcelona 0

21 November 2006: Celtic 1 Man Utd 0

3 October 2007: Celtic 2 Milan 1

The Champions League group stages have provided us with opportunities to mug some of Europe’s aristocrats at Celtic Park – Juventus, AC Milan and Manchester United have all come a cropper – but none of them arrived in Glasgow as laden with medals as Barcelona did, let alone the consensus label of Greatest Team The World Has Ever Seen.

Barcelona didn’t have their first-choice defence Celtic were without four key players. Barcelona still had Lionel Messi and Andres Iniesta. We had free transfer signings Joe Ledley and Kelvin Wilson.

Barcelona brought on World Cup winners David Villa, Cesc Fabregas and Gerard Pique from their bench. Celtic brought on 18-year-old Tony Watt from Coatbridge, and he duly scored their second goal.

So where does this rank among Celtic victories in Europe Well, they were a strong team throughout the Sixties and Seventies, so it wasn’t entirely unexpected that they should take a few scalps. As mentioned above, there wasn’t much to shout about in the Eighties and Nineties.

And those Champions League wins in the Noughties, and the run to the 2003 UEFA Cup Final, were achieved with the help of some pretty canny characters such as Martin O’Neill, John Hartson, Alan Thompson, Chris Sutton and Henrik Larsson.

Off and running: Victor Wanyama got the party started with Celtic's opening goal on a historic night

Off and running: Victor Wanyama got the party started with Celtic's opening goal on a historic night

Happy days: Celtic celebrated their 125th anniversary in style with victory over Barcelona on Wednesday

Happy days: Celtic celebrated their 125th anniversary in style with victory over Barcelona on Wednesday

The European Cup win of 1967 will always represent the pinnacle of Celtic achievement, but given the callowness of Wednesday night’s line-up, the inexperience of a manager in his first Champions League season and the sheer weight of talent, reputations and odds stacked against them, I’d put it just behind – maybe even on a par with – the home and away victories over Leeds United that earned a second European Cup final appearance in 1970.

And if this should prove to be as good as it gets, well, I’ll settle for that.

Glory days: Celtic won both legs against Leeds in 1970 to reach a second European Cup final

Glory days: Celtic won both legs against Leeds in 1970 to reach a second European Cup final

Andre Villas-Boas rues Tottenham"s "worst performance of the season"

Villas-Boas rues Tottenham's 'worst performance of the season'

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UPDATED:

19:16 GMT, 3 November 2012

Andre Villas-Boas admits his team put on their worst performance of the season as Tottenham slumped to a shock 1-0 defeat to strugglers Wigan at White Hart Lane.

Tottenham went into this game having won five of their previous six Barclays Premier League matches, but they struggled throughout the clash with the Lancashire minnows.

Not so hot Spurs: Ben Watson helped Wigan to a famous and well-earned win over Tottenham

Not so hot Spurs: Ben Watson helped Wigan to a famous and well-earned win over Tottenham

Not so hot Spurs: Ben Watson helped Wigan to a famous and well-earned win over Tottenham

Wigan goalkeeper Ali Al-Habsi was a
spectator for much of the encounter in north London, and Villas-Boas'
men were very fortunate that Ben Watson's strike was the only goal they
conceded.

Spurs' passing was poor, they failed
to create any meaningful chances, and overall they looked a pale
imitation of the side that had held on courageously at Southampton last
weekend.

The performance, which drew an outcry
of anger from the home fans – who also disagreed with Villas-Boas'
decision to substitute Jermain Defoe – was way below what the Portuguese
expects.

'It was maybe our worst performance
of the season,' said Villas-Boas, who saw his team booed off against
Norwich and West Brom earlier in the campaign.

'We didn't manage to keep the ball or pass well. We couldn't recognise ourselves today.

'Wigan were superior. Our chances weren't clear cut. There are various reasons why we played like this.

Shame no-one saw it: Wigan, who once lost 9-1 at White Hart Lane, bought a handful of fans

Shame no-one saw it: Wigan, who once lost 9-1 at White Hart Lane, bought a handful of fans

'The opponents were sharp and aggressive. We kept making mistakes. We played more with the heart rather than the head.'

Spurs keeper Brad Friedel had already
pulled off two top-drawer saves to deny Shaun Maloney before the
American's goal was breached in the second half.

Friedel flapped at Maloney's corner under the bar and the ball fell straight to Watson, who drove in from close range.

Yard short: The scoreline wasn't flattering to Wigan, who more than matched Spurs everywhere

Yard short: The scoreline wasn't flattering to Wigan, who more than matched Spurs everywhere

Yard short: The scoreline wasn't flattering to Wigan, who more than matched Spurs everywhere

The home support, who were already
angry at their team's showing in the first half, turned on their team's
manager moments after the goal went in when Villas-Boas took off Defoe
and brought on Emmanuel Adebayor to partner Clint Dempsey up front.

The Spurs fans booed the decision and
chanted Defoe's name as he sauntered off the pitch before grabbing his
coat and disappearing down the tunnel.

Chances: Jan Vertongen and Gareth Bale worked well on the left, but failed to make a breakthrough

Chances: Jan Vertongen and Gareth Bale worked well on the left, but failed to make a breakthrough

Chances: Jan Vertongen and Gareth Bale worked well on the left, but failed to make a breakthrough

Villas-Boas explained the decision to the in-form striker afterwards, and insisted he understands the fans' angst.

'We understand that they can show their frustrations,' the 35-year-old said.

'We don't do things to punish them or for the fans to show revolt. We do things for the benefit of the team.

Wing men: On the opposite flank, Aaron Lennon and Kyle Walker got little change from Wigan

Wing men: On the opposite flank, Aaron Lennon and Kyle Walker got little change from Wigan

Wing men: On the opposite flank, Aaron Lennon and Kyle Walker got little change from Wigan

'They want the win, but we want the win as much as them. We respect them.'

Defoe has scored seven goals for club and country this season, but looked poor on this occasion.

'We (Villas-Boas and Defoe) spoke briefly afterwards,' the Spurs boss said.

'It was obviously disappointing for
him to come off since he has been on a good goal-scoring run, but the
team is also important.

'We don't make the change to punish him. We make the change to improve things.'

The Latics had gone six Barclays Premier League games without a victory before their 2-1 win against West Ham last weekend, but they performed superbly again.

They passed with finesse, looked dangerous on the counter-attack, and Arouna Kone made life difficult for Steven Caulker and William Gallas throughout.

'Many people watching will say Spurs had a bad day, but I wouldn't agree with that at all,' Martinez said.

'We had to work very hard today. We were brave, we stopped Spurs from playing and we played high up.

'That opened up space for players like Gareth Bale and Aaron Lennon but the concentration and partnerships all over the park helped us to stop Spurs from having a say on the ball.'

Martinez's men usually leave it until the spring before they go on a run that preserves their top-flight status, but having achieved wins over West Ham and Spurs, the Spaniard is confident that a season-defining sequence is in the making for his side.

'To have that belief and that arrogance to go anywhere and be yourself makes you very proud of the team,' Martinez said.

'We have that winning mentality now and I'm proud of the team.'

Poland v England: Roy Hodgson pleased with selection headache

Hodgson happy with 'selection headache' ahead of World Cup qualifier against Poland

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UPDATED:

15:59 GMT, 15 October 2012

Roy Hodgson has welcomed the selection problems handed to him after Friday night's victory over San Marino as he prepares to pick his England team to face Poland on Tuesday night.

England's 5-0 win at Wembley came despite the absence of a number of Hodgson's more experienced players, and he now has some thinking to do ahead of the trip to Warsaw.

'We try to utilise the squad for the two games, and maybe keep some players back from the San Marino game,' Hodgson said.

All smiles: Hodgson and Gerrard share a joke at the pre-match press conference on Monday

All smiles: Hodgson and Gerrard share a joke at the pre-match press conference on Monday

'We have a lot of players who didn't play against San Marino available tomorrow night so have quite a good option. Unfortunately we didn't recover Frank Lampard or Ryan Bertrand but other than that we have a full squad to choose from and quite a few players who didn't take part at all against San Marino.'

Leighton Baines impressed starting ahead of Ashley Cole, while Danny Welbeck made the most of getting the nod over Jermain Defoe with two goals in the win.

Leading by example: Gerrard is poised to captain England again after missing the San Marino game through suspension

Leading by example: Gerrard is poised to captain England again after missing the San Marino game through suspension

'There are quite a few (selection decisions) and that's good to have,' Hodgson added.

'I'd prefer not to quantify them or put them in any order, but it's good that the players who came in against San Marino who people did not see as first choice played well.

'You do get more a selection headache, but all coaches will tell you selection headaches are what we're after.'

Several youngsters produced star turns against the European minnows on Friday night. Welbeck bagged a brace while Arsenal wideman Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain capped a fine performance by scoring the final goal.

Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain

Danny Welbeck

All white on the night: Oxlade-Chamberlain and Welbeck both scored in the win over San Marino on Friday night

However, Hodgson was keen to impress upon the younger generation that they must earn their place in the international side by proving themselves with their respective clubs.

'If they want to take over then they'll have to play very well because some of the experienced players are still very keen to play football at this level for as long as possible,' Hodgson said.

'They'll have to make certain they are better than the ones who have been doing the job.

'It is nice to know we are producing
some players now who will challenge, will continue to improve, will
mature with time and the matches they can play.

Relaxed: The England manager appeared in good spirits ahead of England's Warsaw test

Relaxed: The England manager appeared in good spirits ahead of England's Warsaw test

'My only fear is the usual one of hoping these talents can get enough game time. 'It's always nice to have experience in your team and it's also quite nice sometimes to have some younger players in the team.

'Experience is important and we do have, at the moment, a good balance between youth and experience but the key tomorrow night is nothing more complicated than playing well.'

Hodgson has been pleased with England's performances away from Wembley since he took the reins earlier this year but has promised they are not about to rest on their laurels.

'They've played well and we've had some good results but the past is the past and the good results or the good performances in the past doesn't guarantee a good performance or a good result in the future,' he added.

'We always start from a situation where there are three points up for grabs and 95 minutes or so to play.

'That's the way we'll continue to look at every game until such time as this qualifying campaign is over.'

Giovanni Trapattoni faces Ireland revolt

Trapattoni struggles to control player revolt as Kelly refuses to board plane

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UPDATED:

22:18 GMT, 14 October 2012

Giovanni Trapattoni was forced to quell a player revolt before the squad left for the critical World Cup qualifier in the Faroe Islands.

Defender Stephen Kelly, who was not used during Friday’s shocking home defeat to Germany, rowed with Trapattoni’s assistant Marco Tardelli after the final training session in Malahide on Sunday morning.

Sportsmail understands the bust-up occurred before the team were due to depart for the Faroe Islands.

Revolt: Stephen Kelly (right) refused to board the Ireland plane

Revolt: Stephen Kelly (right) refused to board the Ireland plane

And the Fulham full-back, who was overlooked in favour of Everton’s Seamus Coleman and Toronto FC centre-back Darren O’Dea for the 6-1 loss, threatened not to board the flight to Vagar.

Trapattoni and senior FAI figures were forced to intervene in the row to placate Kelly and persuaded the Dubliner to get on the flight to the north Atlantic island.

Kelly is expected to train with the whole Ireland squad on the plastic surface in Torshavn today but is now almost certain to be among the substitutes for Ireland’s third qualifier in the World Cup 2014 campaign.

After O’Dea’s woeful performance alongside Ireland’s stand-in captain John O’ Shea, the former Celtic man was expected to be left out, but Trapattoni may now turn to him to face the minnows from the Faroes who have only won a handful of qualifying points.

In trouble: Giovanni Trapattoni

In trouble: Giovanni Trapattoni

The row is the latest blow for under-fire Ireland manager Trapattoni, who faced calls to quit his 1.2million-a-year role after the worst home defeat in a competitive match on Friday night.

The Italian coach has been accused of falling out with members of his squad and staff throughout his four-and-a-half year reign.

But an unsavoury argument with mild-mannered Kelly, who has been in the squad since the former Italy boss took over, will be a new low for the under pressure regime.

Phil Jagielka says England have tough task in Poland

Now the hard work begins: Jagielka and Co ready for tough task ahead of Poland clash

PUBLISHED:

14:43 GMT, 14 October 2012

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UPDATED:

14:47 GMT, 14 October 2012

Phil Jagielka has warned his England team-mates that they face their toughest test yet in the World Cup qualifiers, as they look to take all three points from Poland in Warsaw on Tuesday.

A 5-0 victory over the minnows at Wembley was a nice tune-up for Roy Hodgson's men ahead of the midweek World Cup qualifier in Warsaw, with strikers Wayne Rooney and Danny Welbeck profiting with a brace apiece.

England are only too aware a trip to the Euro 2012 co-hosts represents a significant step up in calibre, and Everton defender Jagielka is grateful that England's workmanlike performance against San Marino threw up no surprises.

Grounded: Phil Jagielka knows England's trip to Poland will provide a real test for his team

Grounded: Phil Jagielka knows England's trip to Poland will provide a real test for his team

'Three points in the bag, five goals scored and none conceded, as far as we're concerned it was a good professional job done,' Jagielka said.

'We knew what kind of a test we were in for and we got through it okay – is probably about the right word – and we knew that Tuesday is probably going to be a lot more of a test.

'It was all about a clean sheet from the defensive point of view and for the front men to create and score goals and get some confidence heading into Tuesday.

'We're expecting a much more difficult game on Tuesday night.'

Frank Lampard (calf) and Ryan Bertrand (illness) have both been ruled out of the game after failing to recover from the problems that also saw them miss out against San Marino.

Easily done: Wayne Rooney led his team to a routine 5-0 win over San Marino at Wembley

Easily done: Wayne Rooney led his team to a routine 5-0 win over San Marino at Wembley

Out: The likes of Theo Walcott (centre), Ryan Bertrand and Frank Lampard will miss the clash with Poland

Out: The likes of Theo Walcott (centre), Ryan Bertrand and Frank Lampard will miss the clash with Poland

The Chelsea duo's club team-mate Ashley Cole, meanwhile, finds himself at the centre of Hodgson's biggest selection call for Tuesday night, with Everton's Leighton Baines pushing him hard for the left-back berth.

Baines turned in another impressive performance during the San Marino win and he has now started all four internationals since the Euro 2012 finals as Cole nurses an ankle problem.

The former Wigan man now looks a genuine contender for the number three shirt, and Jagielka admits his Everton team-mate is pushing Cole hard.

'It's going to be a really tough decision,' said Jagielka.

'You've got Ashley Cole on 98 caps, and probably the in-form player in the Premier League in Leighton Baines who's playing there at the moment.

Centre of attention: Tom Cleverley is hoping to shine in midfield again

Centre of attention: Tom Cleverley is hoping to shine in midfield again

'As far as the manager goes it's a headache, but probably a nice one to have.

'I think I'd be flicking a coin.'

On the absence of Lampard, Jagielka added that he expected Michael Carrick and Tom Cleverley to again shine if asked to deputise alongside returning captain Steven Gerrard.

'Frank's done well for England, especially recently, so we will be missing him,' he said.

'But if you look at the other night's game, Michael and Tom did fantastically well and we've also got our captain to come back, so cover for Frank not being here is looking really good at the moment.'

England 5 San Marino 0: Video highlights

England 5 San Marino 0: Video highlights of the Three Lions' World Cup qualifier at Wembley

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UPDATED:

10:43 GMT, 13 October 2012

Wayne Rooney scored two as England swept San Marino aside with minimal fuss in the World Cup 2014 qualifier at a packed Wembley Stadium.

Danny Welbeck bagged a brace and Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain rounded off the scoring as the Three Lions cruised past the minnows in front of a full house.

The only negative on the night was the injury to Theo Walcott who was taken off on a stretcher early in the match following a hefty collision with the visitors' goalkeeper. Watch all the highlights of the match right here.

Theo Walcott broken rib fear after England winger thumped by keeper

England manager fumes as horror challenge puts Walcott in hospital

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UPDATED:

22:29 GMT, 12 October 2012

England fired five goals past the minnows of San Marino but manager Roy Hodgson was furious with a 'fierce' challenge which left Arsenal winger Theo Walcott in hospital.

Walcott was admitted for tests on his chest as he suffered breathing difficulties amid fears he may have broken ribs. He was also said to have been coughing blood is unlikely to be fit for Tuesday’s World Cup qualifier in Poland.

Theo Walcott collides with Aldo Junior Simoncini of San Marino

Collision: San Marino goalkeeper Aldo Simoncini charges into the Theo Walcott

Theo Walcott

Theo Walcott collides with Aldo Junior Simoncini of San Marino

San Marino goalkeeper Aldo Simoncini charged into the Walcott in the fifth minute as the Arsenal ace tried to get on the end of a through ball. He needed five minutes of treatment on the field before going off to be replaced by Tottenham Hotspur's Aaron Lennon.

'If I described it as reckless I'd be kind,' said
Hodgson. 'It was a fierce challenge. I don't believe
there was any malice but it's put Theo Walcott in
hospital. It was a very poor challenge.

'We have to wait to find out the extent of his injury. It doesn't look good. If your goalkeeper does that, you're lucky to have your goalkeeper on the field and not concede a penalty.

'He'll be in hospital overnight for a scan. It's a chest injury. Until they've X-rayed it and scanned it, we won't know. It put a dampener on the evening, but there were positives, too.'

Theo Walcott

Concern: Walcott suffered breathing difficulties amid fears he may have broken rib

San Marino manager Giampaolo Mazza said:
'It was just an accident. The goalkeeper didn't do it on purpose. We're
sorry for Walcott and we hope he's going to recover quickly.'

Among Hodgson's positives was a surprise draw for Ukraine in Moldova as
England moved top of the group with seven points from three games following the 5-0 victory at Wembley.

The England boss was also able to rest three players on yellow cards as
well as Ashley Cole. Steven Gerrard and Glen Johnson will be back from
bans in Warsaw and Frank Lampard may return after injury.

Theo Walcott of England receives treatment

Wayne Rooney and Danny Welbeck scored twice each but it took England 35
minutes to break down the part-timers through a penalty won by Welbeck
and scored by Rooney.

Welbeck added the second two minutes later and the Manchester United
pair doubled the lead after the break before Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain
chipped in his first goal for his country.

Hodgson said: 'It was attack v defence but the way we approached it was
the right way to do it. We probed and created chances and were good
value for our five goals.

'I was happy when we went in 2-0 up at half-time and I knew we would win. I enjoyed the second half.'

Rooney's goals took him past Alan Shearer, Tom Finney and Nat Lofthouse
to 31 goals, fifth in England's all-time list of goalscorers.

Gary
Lineker, second in the list with 48, one behind Sir Bobby Charlton,
tweeted: 'Welcome @WayneRooney to the leading 5 England goalscorers.
I'm convinced that one day you'll be top of the charts.'

Rooney said: 'It's a great honour. To be in the top five is something I'm proud of. Hopefully there will be many more.'

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