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Gunners teen in England surprise

16 May 2012 20:54

Arsenal teenager Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain is the surprise inclusion in England’s Euro 2012 squad.

The 18-year-old midfielder has won his first call-up to the senior squad despite starting only six Premier League and three Champion League matches in his first top flight campaign.

John Terry is also included at the expense of Rio Ferdinand in the 23-man squad selected by Roy Hodgson and announced by the Football Association on Wednesday.

Other notable selections include Norwich City’s John Ruddy as one of the two reserve goalkeepers, Stewart Downing in midfield and Jermain Defoe and Andy Carroll up front, despite seasons in which the two strikers regularly failed to make the starting XI at their respective clubs.

Theo Walcott and Scott Parker have also been selected despite carrying injuries going into the tournament.

Daniel Sturridge, Aaron Lennon, Peter Crouch, Bobby Zamora, Micah Richards, Phil Jagielka and Grant Holt are among the other players who failed to make the final cut, while Kyle Walker misses out through injury.

Hodgson will take three goalkeepers, seven defenders, nine midfielders and four centre-forwards to Poland and Ukraine.

In defence, the four centre-halves chosen are Joleon Lescott, Gary Cahill, Phil Jones and Terry, who has been given the nod despite losing the England captaincy earlier this year after being charged with alleged racist abuse, for which he will stand trial nine days after Euro 2012 ends.

Jones will also provide cover for Glen Johnson at right-back, while Ashley Cole and Leighton Baines have been selected for the left-back positions.

In goal, Rob Green and Ruddy will provide back-up to established first choice Joe Hart.

In midfield, Hodgson has selected Downing, Parker, Walcott, Gareth Barry, Steven Gerrard, Frank Lampard, James Milner, Oxlade-Chamberlain and Ashley Young.

Wayne Rooney, Danny Welbeck, Carroll and Defoe have been chosen to play up front.

England have also put five players on stand-by in case there are pull-outs before the final UEFA squad deadline on May 29. They are Jack Butland, Jordan Henderson, Adam Johnson, Jagielka and Sturridge.

Squad in full: Hart, Green, Ruddy; Baines, Cahill, Cole, Johnson, Jones, Lescott, Terry; Barry, Downing, Gerrard, Lampard, Milner, Oxlade-Chamberlain, Parker, Walcott, Young; Carroll, Defoe, Rooney, Welbeck.

Stand-by: Butland, Jagielka, Henderson, Johnson A, Sturridge.

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