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Friendlies

  • 26 May 2012
  • • 19:45
  • • Ullevaal Stadion, Oslo
  • Referee: M. Weiner
  • • Attendance: 21496
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Norway - England Preview: Roy Hodgson looking for winning start as national coach in Euro 2012 warm-up

Norway - England Preview: Roy Hodgson looking for winning start as national coach in Euro 2012 warm-up

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The 64-year-old makes his debut as Three Lions boss in Oslo for the first of two friendlies before the trip to Poland and Ukraine for this summer's showpiece tournament

  PROBABLE LINEUPS

NORWAY

Jarstein
Hogli, Hangeland, Demidov, Riise
Braaten, Grindheim, Jenssen, Pedersen
Huseklepp, Abdellaoue
ENGLAND

Green
Jones, Jagielka, Lescott, Baines
Barry, Parker
Walcott, Gerrard, Young

Carroll

Havard Nordtveit, who spent three years at Arsenal without making an appearance, has pulled out of the Norway squad with a shoulder injury. Thomas Rogne has also been forced to miss the game with a muscle strain and Kim Andre Madsen has been brought in by Egil Olsen as his replacement.

The Premier League will be represented in the Norwegian side as Fulham duo John Arne Riise and Brede Hangeland should feature, with Blackburn's Morten Gamst Pedersen also available. However, John Carew was left out of the squad.

Roy Hodgson has confirmed that Wayne Rooney will be left out of the England side due to a toe injury, and Glen Johnson is also a doubt with an infected toe. The Chelsea contingent involved in last weekend's Champions League final will also be missing and will not join up with the squad until next week.

Phil Jones should therefore start at right-back but Liverpool's Martin Kelly is also joining up with the squad as extra defensive cover and may get his chance at some point. At centre-back, Phil Jagielka and Joleon Lescott look the most likely combination after featuring together in Thursday's training session.

In midfield Scott Parker is expected to be fit despite a recent Achilles problem. Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain is unlikely to start but Stewart Downing could replace Theo Walcott or Ashley Young in an attempt to give the Liverpool winger a confidence boost ahead of the trip to Ukraine.

Up front Andy Carroll looks increasingly likely to be deployed as a lone striker, particularly with Danny Welbeck missing training in the week.

  DID YOU KNOW?
  • The clash will be England's first under new boss Roy Hodgson.
  • Norway finished level on points with Portugal in Group H of the qualification round, however, an inferior goal difference meant they missed out on Euro 2012.
  • Therefore, Olsen's side will fail to make their second appearance at the Euros, after debuting in 2000 when they exited at the group stages.
  • The hosts have won three of their last five games, including beating Northern Ireland 3-0 and losing 4-1 to Wales.
  • England have also won three out of their last five fixtures, defeating Spain, Sweden and Wales 1-0.
  • England's players will be familiar with a number of their opponents through the English leagues. Fulham's John Arne Riise (pictured) and Brede Hangeland, Crystal Palace's Jonathan Parr, Blackburn's Morten Gamst Pedersen, Portsmouth's Erik Huseklepp are all in the squad.
  • Saturday's match is England's first of two friendlies before the Euros, the other is against Belgium at Wembley on June 2..
  • Three of the last four meetings between the two sides have been drawn.
  • England have won three to Norway's two from the 10 previous meetings, however they have won just one of the last six fixtures.

 

For those fans outside of the UK, you can still watch the match LIVE online @ LIVESPORT.TV, Official Online Broadcaster to the England/Scotland friendlies. Visit http://www.soccer.livesport.tvfor more info

Players to watch

B. Hangeland

Position: Defender

Games: 0

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  • 0
  • 0
The Fulham defender will probably come up against an aerially domineering foe in Andy Carroll, with the tall stopper likely to be the one deployed to try and curtail the Liverpool man's threat in the air.

The Cottagers' captain can also provide a threat from set-pieces too and will be keen to add to a paltry international return of jsut the one goal scored against Iceland in qualifying for Euro 2012.

A. Carroll

Position: Attacker

Games: 0

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  • 0
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The big man is likely to lead the line for England in the group stages of the Euros, while Rooney serves out his two-match suspension, therefore Saturday's match is a great chance for him to send out a message of intent to the French and Swedish back fours.

The 23-year-old was disappointing for large amounts of Liverpool's Premier League season, ending with just four goals from 35 games. However, encouragingly for England fans, he did display some very bright moments in the Reds' two recent games against Chelsea and Hodgson will be hoping for more of the same in Oslo.

Editor's Prediction

England will be without their main goal threat in the form of Rooney, but should still be able to win this one comfortably. The game is of course Hodgson's first in charge of the national side and is therefore sure to be an experimental one.

Like any experiment, things could go wrong, and Norway certainly have a number of players capable of causing problems. However, the England squad are fighting for places in the new manager's team for the Euros and thus should have enough motivation to produce the goods.

Last Five Matches

Head To Head

Norway

England

Wins
1
2
2
Wins

Betting & Predictions

Reader's Predictions

Norway NOR
Norway Norway
Draw
England ENG
England England
15%
77%

Top 3 Predictions

Norway NOR
0 - 2
England ENG
Norway NOR
0 - 3
England ENG
Norway NOR
1 - 3
England ENG

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