Former Stoke City defender Danny Higginbotham has questioned England manager Roy Hodgson’s decision to include Manchester United midfielder Michael Carrick and Tottenham Hotspur winger Andros Townsend in the team.
Both Carrick and Townsend were part of the Three Lions’ original squad for the Euro 2016 qualifier against Slovenia and the friendly against Scotland despite not playing much so far this season. However, the duo had to withdraw after picking up knocks.
Higginbotham, a former United player, has now claimed that Hodgson should not have called up Carrick or Townsend.
“People are surprised when players drop out of the squad with injuries – Andros Townsend and Michael Carrick from the squad selected to face Slovenia tonight, for example – when an injury is actually to be half expected when someone has been barely playing any football,” the 35-year-old wrote in The Independent.
“When a player like Carrick has been out of the game for months is in the early stages of his comeback, his body needs a break, not to be called up for England. Little wonder he has strained his groin.
“Townsend has started one Premier League game all season. He lasted 45 minutes against Stoke last weekend.”
One cannot help but agree with Higgingbotham.
While Carrick has just recovered from injury and is 33 years of age, Townsend has struggled throughout the campaign for playing time.
Even when they are fully fit, one has to ask whether the duo are good enough for the England team. And if they are, then what does it say about the state of the Three Lions squad?
Carrick is not going to get any better and is heading towards the end of his career, while Townsend is an overrated winger whose few months of great form earlier in his career are all he has got to show (click here to read more).
Perhaps Hodgson was short of options when he decided to name his England team….