LONDON (AFP) –
England manager Roy Hodgson will end the guessing game over John Terry and Rio Ferdinand when he names his squad for Euro 2012 next week, it was confirmed on Wednesday.
A Football Association statement confirmed Hodgson’s 23-man party for the finals in Poland and Ukraine would be released on May 16 at 1:00 pm (1200 GMT) with all eyes on the manager’s decision over Terry and Ferdinand.
Hodgson, who was only named as the permanent successor to former manager Fabio Capello last week, faces a tricky decision over veteran centre-halves Terry and Ferdinand.
Chelsea captain Terry faces a court case in July over allegations he racially abused Ferdinand’s younger brother Anton during a Premier League match against Queens Park Rangers last October. Terry denies the charges.
Speaking at his appointment last week, Hodgson said he planned to hold face-to-face talks with Terry and Ferdinand to gauge whether the two could co-exist in the same squad.
However British press reports on Wednesday indicated that Hodgson was leaning towards omitting Terry from his squad in favour of Manchester United star Rio.
“The new England manager Roy Hodgson, increasingly believes that he cannot select both Chelsea’s John Terry and Manchester United’s Rio Ferdinand in England’s European Championship squad,” The Independent reported.
“It is understood that he is considering the possibility of leaving out Terry … ” the paper added.
The Daily Mail also suggested Terry could be excluded saying Hodgson “thinks it will be difficult to take both of them” while the Chelsea captain’s court case remains unresolved.
“The potentially toxic atmosphere inside the England dressing room means that of the two, Terry may be more vulnerable than Ferdinand because of how other players in the squad view him,” The Mail commented.
Hodgson could have delayed naming his first England squad until the UEFA deadline at the end of May but has decided to do so next week in a bid to create a measure of certainty ahead of a pre-tournament training camp in Spain and friendlies against Norway in Oslo and Belgium at Wembley.
The England squad will meet up on Monday, May 21 and travel to Spain for a training camp.
They will fly from Spain to Oslo for the Norway friendly on May 26 and then be given two days off before meeting up again on May 29 to begin preparations for the match against Belgium on June 2.
Another two-day break is scheduled before the squad reconvene on June 5 and then travel to their Euro 2012 base in Krakow, Poland, the following day.