Roy Hodgson has agreed with Louis van Gaal that Jesse Lingard’s first England call-up has been ridiculously premature – but hinted that there are more to come.
“I would say it is too much too early,” Van Gaal said after Lingard was called up following a that goal helped Manchester United beat West Brom. “We have to wait to see if he is consistent.” The stats back up Van Gaal’s words: Lingard has yet to reach 10 caps for United, and even during his loan stints at clubs including Leicester and Brighton he has only ever been a bit-part player.
When asked about the call-up, however, Hodgson both agreed with the United manager and explained what his thinking is. “I don’t think [Van Gaal] was wrong to say that,” Hodgson said, addiing that it is England’s injury crisis which forced his hand. “Under normal circumstances, we wouldn’t have been considering Jesse Lingard at this time, even though he’s a very interesting player. I can understand why [Van Gaal] said that.
“But the situation has changed enormously. [Van Gaal] gave his blessing without any problem whatsoever. It would be unfair pushing that back on him.” England have an astonishing 17 regular squad members out injured, including a raft of top quality forwards such as Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, Daniel Sturridge and Theo Walcott.
And with that situation in mind, Hodgson went on to add words which will give Lingard huge hope for a long and fruitful England career: “I didn’t want to turn to an individual for one game who would not have a chance again in the future,” said Hodgson. “That explains the inclusion of Jesse Lingard… We’re pursuing a policy that we set out some time ago and we are trying to stay faithful to it.”
Sourced: Eurosport news