Hodgson hits out at England spying

England manager Roy Hodgson is frustrated with the spy tactics that saw the publication of a picture of a piece of paper that appeared to confirm Harry Kane would start against Lithuania on Friday, Sky Sports has reported.

Photographers were allowed in to England training on Tuesday and took pictures of Hodgson holding a piece of paper that seemed to list a possible formation for the Three Lions with Kane partnering captain Wayne Rooney in attack, and a midfield of Andros Townsend, Ryan Mason, Ross Barkley and Theo Walcott.

Phil Jones and Chris Smalling were listed as central defenders in the attacking training session and Hodgson has warned against making assumptions about the team and stressed the team on the paper was for the training routine only.

“First of all it is dangerous to spy on those things at a training session,” the manager protested. “The fact is that piece of paper is a piece of paper we take out to training because we have to select teams.

“I don’t think it’s right to suggest that in order to avoid this type of espionage I have to remember everything I have thought about but we change people around quite often.

“If that is what people want to read into the espionage that is up to them but I hope they are not going to come and blame me if I don’t start with Kane and Rooney and say ‘we had it on your piece of paper’ because they shouldn’t be looking at it in the first place.”

England host Lithuania in the fifth round of matches in qualification Group E and currently top the group with 12 points from a possible 12. Lithuania are fourth with six points, holding a record of two wins and two defeats from their four games.

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