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Football
Hodgson’s injury woes continue
England boss dealt another injury blow after defender Gary Cahill ruled out of Euro 2012 with a double jaw fracture.
Last Modified: 04 Jun 2012 11:54
Crunch time: England defender meets the pointy end of his own goalkeeper Joe Hart during a friendly against Belgium on Saturday [GALLO/GETTY]

England defender Gary Cahill has been ruled out of Euro 2012 with a double fracture of the jaw, the Football Association (FA) announced Sunday.

The 26-year-old - who won the FA Cup and Champions League with Chelsea last season - suffered the injury when he was shoved in the back by Belgium's Dries Mertens during the first half of a 1-0 international friendly win at Wembley on Saturday and, as a result, collided with England goalkeeper Joe Hart.

He was sent for X-rays and now he has become the third player to drop out of England manager Roy Hodgson's squad this week after midfielders Gareth Barry and Frank Lampard's hopes of playing in Poland and Ukraine were dashed by injury.

Liverpool's Martin Kelly was called up Sunday as a replacement, with Hodgson having already omitted veteran Manchester United centre-back Rio Ferdinand from his original squad.

Double fracture

An FA statement issued Sunday said: "Gary Cahill has been withdrawn from England's Euro 2012 squad following the injury he suffered in the match against Belgium.

"The Chelsea defender has two fractures of his jaw, one either side. The England medical team have been in close contact overnight with Cahill's club doctors who will treat him moving forward.

"Liverpool defender Martin Kelly will be called into the squad -- subject to agreement from UEFA's medical team.

"Kelly trained with the England players last week and was part of the group that travelled to Norway (where England won 1-0 in Oslo to give Hodgson a win in his first game as England boss)."

Some good news on the injury front did arrive Sunday when John Terry, Cahill's Chelsea and England central defensive colleague, was passed fit - for the time being at least - after suffering a hamstring problem against Belgium.

"John Terry has been scanned this morning and given the all-clear," the FA said. "He will be re-assessed on Tuesday when the team regroup."

Injury hit

Hodgson immediately feared the worst regarding Cahill's injury, saying after the match: "The referee gave him (Mertens) a yellow card, which he deserved. Unfortunately for us, the consequences might be a lot more than a yellow card because a fracture is a distinct possibility."

Now Hodgson has been proved right and he heads to his first major tournament as England manager minus several players from his original squad, with third-choice goalkeeper John Ruddy's finger injury on the second day of training starting a run of fitness problems.

Saturday's match was England's last before they begin their Euro 2012 Group D campaign against France in Donetsk on June 11 -- a game in which Cahill looked likely to start alongside club-mate Terry.

But now the Chelsea captain, if fit, could be partnered by either Everton's Phil Jagielka or Manchester City's Joleon Lescott.

Manchester United's Phil Jones is the only other recognised defender although he could be needed to bolster midfield in the absence of Lampard and Barry. Kelly, who made his England debut off the bench against Norway, is another option, albeit he's a novice at international level.

As well as Terry, England also have concerns over Danny Welbeck, who scored against Belgium, Steven Gerrard and Scott Parker. 

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Source:
AFP
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