- Rest of World
|EURO 2012 Special: The unlucky trio who missed out for England|
Roy Hodgson had to make a tough decision and exclude several quality players for his EURO 2012 campaign. Adrian Del Monte believes England could have done with the following players, who failed to make the final 23...
Now we all know why Rio Ferdinand isn't in the England national team, but surely on the back of what has happened over the past fortnight in the England camp he warrants a call-up.
The issue here is Hodgson himself - keen to stick by the initial decision to snub the man who is arguably the nation's best central defender, because of an altercation between his brother and international team-mate John Terry. Personally, I would have dropped Terry and given Ferdinand a spot in the national team, perhaps even made him the captain as well, but Hodgson opted against doing so.
Nothing against the new England manger, because it must be a very difficult role to take on with limited time to prepare, however this situation was not handled well, and being one of the more significant issues to deal with, it's a less than ideal start to the Three Lions European campaign.
Their injury toll continues to mount, including a broken jaw suffered by central defender Gary Cahil, yet the Manchester United man didn't even get a look in, with Liverpool's Martin Kelly incredibly getting the nod over the veteran.
This will definitely be a decision that Hodgson regrets, particularly when England are packing their bags after three group fixtures.
Micah Richards was another surprise omission by Hodgson, and many are still scratching their heads as to why the right-back wasn't selected in the squad.
The irony about this situation is that once snubbed by his manager, Richards refused to be named as a standby player, an option that certainly would have seen him now picked following the growing list of injuries.
The Manchester City man admitted that he was 'gutted' when he was notified that he would not be playing at EURO 2012, and do you really blame him? Arguably the best-right back in England, Richards ticket to the finals looked a certainty when Tottenham starlet Kyle Walker was ruled out through injury. However Hodgson opted for Liverpool's Glen Johnson instead, as well as the versatile Phil Jones as cover.
It's a cruel blow to Richards who has worked so hard over the past 24 months, but at the age of just 23 his time will come.
To be fair, the City man did struggle with injury regularly in 2012, however his quality cannot be questioned, so expect to see him back on the international arena in no time, probably in Brazil 2014.
Daniel Sturridge was one of many unlucky strikers to be overlooked by Hodgson, as along with Darren Bent, Peter Crouch and co, the youngster certainly had something unique to offer up front.
On the back of his most prolific season in England, scoring 11 goals in 28 league appearances for Chelsea, Sturridge looked primed to make his mark at EURO 2012, particularly given the absence of star striker Wayne Rooney for the nation's first two matches against France and Sweden.
Nevertheless he too was overlooked, and it was another questionable decision made by Hodgson given the fact that he will have just three recognised strikers available for those first two fixtures, until of course Rooney returns from suspension.
At 22 years of age and with two caps next to his name, the Chelsea man is lacking in experience, but may have provided the Three Lions with the additional buzz and energy up front that they will need to progress from the groups at EURO 2012.
With Andy Carroll, Jermain Defoe and Danny Welbeck the only recognised strikers for the first 180 minutes of England's European Championships, Hodgson's options are limited up front, meaning Sturridge could have played a vital role at the finals.