Fri, Sep 06, 2013 - Page 18 News List

World Cup: EU nations have Brazil in sights in key qualifiers

AFP, PARIS and LONDON

“I don’t think I will need to caution the players or get them to guard against complacency because as yet, I haven’t seen any signs of that in the games we’ve played,” said Hodgson, who will be without the injured Wayne Rooney.

The head injury that has sidelined Rooney looks like “something out of a horror film,” England colleague Theo Walcott said.

Rooney was left with a big gash on his forehead after being caught in the face by United teammate Phil Jones earlier this week.

Asked to describe the injury at a press conference at England’s St George’s Park training base, Walcott pointed to a bottle of water beside him and said: “I’ve seen a picture of it and it’s about that big. It is a very big gash. It is not a nice sight, to be honest. It is not going to help his looks, I wouldn’t think.”

United midfielder Michael Carrick, who saw Rooney get injured, dismissed suggestions from journalists that his teammate should have taken inspiration from Terry Butcher’s iconic, blood-stained performance in a 1990 World Cup qualifier against Sweden by putting himself forward to play.

“We know what he [Rooney] is like,” Carrick said. “If there was a way of playing, he would. It is easy for people to look at the past and compare with what has gone on, but every situation is different.”

Liverpool striker Daniel Sturridge had been in line to deputize for Rooney at home to Moldova, but he is now doubtful with a thigh injury that prevented him from training on Tuesday.

With Tottenham Hotspur’s Jermain Defoe yet to start a league game this season, it means either United’s Danny Welbeck or Southampton’s Rickie Lambert will lead the line against Moldova.

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