Football News

Hodgson grateful for England depth

Created on 15 Oct., 2012 7:08 PM GMT

England manager Roy Hodgson has welcomed the extensive options he has in his squad for Tuesday's World Cup qualifying clash with Poland.

Hodgson's side beat San Marino 5-0 at Wembley on Friday, with a number of fringe players staking their claim for a regular starting berth.

But the former West Brom boss insists that an embarrassment of riches should never be looked at negatively.

"There's quite a few (selection decisions) and that's good. I prefer not to either quantify them or put them in any sort of order," Hodgson said.

"I thought the players who came in against San Marino, who people perhaps didn't see as the first choice, did so well and played so well, and that of course means you get more of a selection headache, but as coaches will tell you, selection headaches are what we are after."

England's squad has also benefitted from an influx of young players, with the likes of Tom Cleverley and Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain proving influential in recent matches.

But Hodgson says he needs to find the right balance between youth and maturity.

“It's always nice to have experience in your team but it's also quite nice to have some younger players in our team," he said.

"But experience is important, and I think we have a good balance between youth and experience."

The 65-year-old moved to warn fans that England's opponents will be no pushovers in Warsaw, as he prepares his side for a tough test against the Poles.

"We're expecting a very tough game. At this level of football you're a fool if you ever expect an easy game," he said.

"Of course, San Marino, everyone knows they find it difficult to win matches but that isn't the case for Poland or the other teams in our group. We know this will be a test for us.

"But I like to think we're prepared for that test and we'll play at the level we want to play at."

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