Roy Hodgson 'can't justify' naming Marcus Rashford in England squad
By Andy Swales
Last Updated: 22/04/16 8:57am
Roy Hodgson admits he has been impressed by Manchester United teenager Marcus Rashford but says it would be "a bold decision" to name him in England's squad for this summer's Euro 2016 Finals.
The 18-year-old scored twice on his Premier League debut against Arsenal in February and has already been talked about as a possible contender for the tournament in France.
However, the England coach appeared to suggest he has more than enough experienced strikers at his disposal and is unlikely to fast-track the United forward.
Hodgson said: "I think it would be a very bold decision to put him in and I think it would mean possibly leaving someone behind who, at the moment in my opinion, has more reason to be called up.
"But you never know. The fact is it would be foolish as well to say 'no, no, he's not ready, he can't do it'. I am sure he could do it.
"I am sure if there was enough spaces available and if we were taking 30, we'd certainly probably be considering him.
"But when it's 23, and we've already got a bit of a headache with the front players as to who we might have to leave out.
"To put another one in there who is 18 years of age, has four or five games, is asking a lot. But I have been impressed with him.
"He wouldn't have kept his place in the United team if Louis van Gaal didn't think he was worthy of a place in the team.
"But it looks unlikely to me with the current players we've got and the competition for places in that area of the field."
Hodgson confirmed he has total faith in England skipper Wayne Rooney who has just returned to the United first team following injury and will be heading to France this summer.
With Harry Kane and Jamie Vardy in top form this season - they have netted more than 20 Premier League goals each - many have suggested Rooney may not be first choice for England anymore.
However Hodgson thinks Rooney, who was a star of the Euro Finals 12 years ago, will not let his country down this time either.
"There is no doubt his passion and energy is undimmed. I don't doubt that for one minute and, who knows, maybe we wouldn't be surprised if this speculation about him - should he playing or not be playing? - might be the type of thing that kicks into gear again.
"I can't compare him with 2004 but by comparing him in the four years we have been together, I haven't noticed any enormous difference. But 2004 is a long time ago."