Liverpool’s Raheem Sterling called up by England
Phil Jones or Chris Smalling expected to replace suspended defender Kyle Walker
Liverpool’s Raheem Sterling (centre) has been called up by England ahead of the meeting with Poland on Saturday. Photograph: Peter Byrne/PA Wire
Manager Roy Hodgson lost two members of his 23-man squad on Friday.
Manchester United midfielder Tom Cleverley was forced to return to his club for treatment on a calf injury sustained in training that is set to keep him on the sidelines for up to three weeks.
Then, during the 4-1 win over Montenegro, full-back Kyle Walker picked up a caution which means he is suspended for the Poland encounter where England must win to book automatic qualification to next summer’s Finals in Brazil.
However, Hodgson evidently felt he was light on bodies and has elected to draft in Sterling, part of Gareth Southgate’s Under-21 side that defeated San Marino on Thursday.
Jamaica-born Sterling became the fifth-youngest player in England history when he started the friendly defeat in Sweden last November.
England head into the final set of fixtures heading Group H by a point.
However, as second-placed Ukraine face a less than daunting away game against San Marino, Hodgson knows victory is essential to avoid the hazardous play-offs.