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Ferdinand out of England squad

Manchester United centre-half Rio Ferdinand has pulled out of England's upcoming World Cup qualifiers against San Marino and Montenegro.

Last Updated: 18/03/13 at 17:23 Post Comment

Ferdinand: Forced out of England's double-header against San Marino and Mont

Ferdinand: Forced out of England's double-header against San Marino and Mont

The 34-year-old was forced to withdraw due to a detailed pre-planned training and medical programme he has been told to follow to help manage a long-standing back problem.

England boss Roy Hodgson met Ferdinand on Sunday before taking the decision to replace him with Tottenham's Steven Caulker.

At the meeting, Ferdinand confirmed he was keen to continue his England career and hoped to be selected for the summer and autumn fixtures ahead of the 2014 World Cup finals in Brazil.

It had been thought Hodgson would rest the 81-times capped defender for Friday's trip to San Marino but would consider him for the Montenegro tie four days later with Michael Dawson ruled out through injury.

"I'm disappointed Rio will not be available, but due to the detailed pre-planned training and medical programme he must follow it's not possible," said Hodgson.

"However, I was pleased he called and asked to meet with me. It was important to hear from him personally about the way he must manage his body between games.

"This is not to say he cannot play back-to-back games - he can and has proven so. He's out this time due to particular pre-planned details already in place for his programme.

"I must place on record how I was impressed with his commitment to playing for England and I look forward to hopefully selecting him for squads in the future."

Ferdinand said: "It was important for me to be able to speak with Roy face to face and explain the situation.

"One thing I made clear was my passion and commitment to represent my country is as strong as ever.

"It's disappointing I won't be able to play a part in the upcoming games but I told Roy I want to continue to be available for England and look forward to working with him in the future."

Caulker has been called up from Stuart Pearce's U21s for the senior matches on Friday, March 22 and the following Tuesday.

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terling needs to be told though that upon entering the Arsenal squad he will re-enact the final scene from Highlander where he will be thrown around a warehouse by cartoon dragons and then be a mere mortal that will only ever spend three to four weeks a season playing football and the rest on the physio's bed. There can be only one.....player available at The Emirates.

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he game changed in our favour when Carrick came on. We were able to play further up the pitch due to having a player who can give and go with the ball and keep possession. Yet barkley made some runs and Townsend scored a good goal but carrick's inclusion and chiellini's withdrawal made the biggest difference to the flow of the game

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o, you've not silenced anyone Andros, i'm afraid. We know you can score a great goal, and it's really handy to have your direct running and willingness to shoot on the bench. But until you can do the other things expected of a winger (beat the man, put a decent cross in, stay wide etc) then you can't expect more than a regular cameo. Wonderful goal though, what a hit! No wonder Buffon wanted the shirt.

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