England to partner Rooney and Defoe against Poland
Wednesday 17 October 2012
Roy Hodgson is to pick both Wayne Rooney and Jermain Defoe in attack for England when their World Cup qualification match against Poland is finally played on Wednesday afternoon, the BBC has reported.
The match was originally scheduled for Tuesday evening but had to be postponed because of a waterlogged pitch following heavy rain in Warsaw. The National Stadium has a roof but it was left open despite the inclement weather being long forecast.
Hodgson is free to change his previously named starting XI as per FIFA rules as the game had not kicked off when it was abandoned, but the former Fulham, Liverpool and West Bromwich Albion manager insists he has no reason to do so.
“I have chosen the team to start the game and I have no intention of changing it unless someone falls ill, Hodgson said. The match is expected to kick off at 4pm BST, 5pm local time.
The manager’s decision to keep faith with the side already named means Danny Welbeck misses out despite scoring twice against San Marino, while Ashley Cole is preferred to Leighton Baines and captain Steven Gerrard also returns to the side. Both Cole and Gerrard will win the 99th caps of their England career.
Joe Hart continues in goal while the back four will be Glen Johnson, Phil Jagielka, Joleon Lescott and Cole, with James Milner, Michael Carrick and Tom Cleverley joining Gerrard in midfield.
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