Roy Hodgson is pleased to have Frank Lampard back in his squad after confirming the midfielder will captain England against Italy.
England manager pleased to have midfielder back
Roy Hodgson is pleased to have Frank Lampard back in his squad after confirming the midfielder will captain England against Italy on Wednesday.
Lampard missed Euro 2012 due to a thigh problem but made it clear that he had no intention of calling time on his international career and was looking to be a part of England's World Cup qualifying campaign.
Hodgson had no hesitation in including Lampard in his plans for the match against the Azzurri, as he decided to name a squad mixing youthful newcomers with more senior players.
And the 34-year-old was also a natural choice as captain as regular skipper Steven Gerrard, Wayne Rooney and the first-choice back four from Euro 2012 have all been rested.
Hodgson is also delighted to have Michael Carrick back at his disposal, after the Manchester United man was not considered for selection over the summer.
Speaking about Lampard, Hodgson said: "We missed him during the Euros. If you have players of Frank Lampard's quality, it is a great pity if they are injured.
"We had the same situation with Gareth Barry so we lost two very important members of our central midfield just before we travelled to Poland.
"But at least now Frank is back, and now we have the added bonus that Michael Carrick, who was not available for the Euros because we were told not to consider him, luckily he has reconsidered and I have got yet another quality player."
Hodgson was keeping his cards close to his chest over the starting XI, opting not to reveal whether Jack Butland or John Ruddy would line up in goal in the absence of Joe Hart.
While both keepers would usually be given a chance to impress in a normal friendly, both teams have been limited to six substitutes apiece so Hodgson admitted he may have to be more frugal with his selections.
Questioned about who would start between the posts, Hodgson told a press conference: "I can't say that because I haven't actually spoken to the players.
"I haven't even given them an indication of who is playing unless they try to read my mind during the training sessions and see how people line up there.
"As far as Jack and John, they're pretty much neck and neck for a place in the team and I'm still to decide whether I just choose one or whether possibly we have enough substitutes to enable me to give each of them a game.
"And that wouldn't be wrong and if we didn't have the restrictions on substitutes I could tell you now.
"But I have to be a little more careful when you can only use six.
"I'm quite anxious we give quite a lot of the players the chance to get on the field and play but we're only allowed six substitutes so in actual fact 19 players is still more than enough.
"We'll still have more substitutes than we're allowed."