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Henderson's injury scare gives Hodgson new headache

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Jordan Henderson could miss England's opening Euro 2016 qualifier against Switzerland after picking up an ankle injury. Photo: Ian Walton/Getty Images

Jordan Henderson could miss England's opening Euro 2016 qualifier against Switzerland after picking up an ankle injury. Photo: Ian Walton/Getty Images

Getty Images

Jordan Henderson could miss England's opening Euro 2016 qualifier against Switzerland after picking up an ankle injury. Photo: Ian Walton/Getty Images

Jordan Henderson has given Roy Hodgson further cause for concern after limping out of training at St Jakob Park last night ahead of England's first Euro 2016 qualifier against Switzerland tonight.

The Liverpool midfielder hurt his left ankle and ended the session early. He was examined on the pitch for a few minutes before walking off for further treatment.

It was unclear whether the problem will have any implications for the game for which Hodgson has already suffered three injury withdrawals.

The most serious of those was Daniel Sturridge, with new call-up Jack Colback and reserve goalkeeper Ben Foster having already returned to their clubs for treatment.

If needed, Hodgson has cover for Henderson in midfield in James Milner or Fabian Delph.

Danny Welbeck is expected to come into the team for Sturridge, with the big question over the kind of system that Hodgson deploys.

The England manager said yesterday that he had the option of using one of the two systems used against Norway on Wednesday. They were 4-4-2 and then a midfield diamond, with Raheem Sterling at its point behind Sturridge and Welbeck.

Disappointed

Hodgson said: "We still have those options. I'm disappointed, but we still have the players there. The fact we haven't raced out to replace people means we think we have enough bodies."

Returning to the country of his greatest triumph, Hodgson said that he was still happy in his job despite recent criticism.

"Am I seeing the nasty side of the job? No. There is no nasty side. I love this job. It's the pinnacle of any coaching career. To coach your country.

"I am aware that, after the World Cup, there may have been a slight swing in popularity. But the real support and popularity is with the players. I need them to believe that we can move forward. I get the good feelings from there.

"I will have to live with external ideas and thoughts and accept them. I'm sure that we will never, really, be able to explain to people how badly we felt on the plane home [from Brazil]."

Just 10 weeks on from their embarrassing World Cup exit, the Three Lions toiled to an uninspiring 1-0 victory against a Norway side ranked 53rd in the world last Wednesday.

Wayne Rooney's winning penalty was one of just two shots on target by England at a half-full Wembley, although Hodgson said those judging the performance by that statistic were talking "absolute f*****g b******s". (© Independent News Service)

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