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Wayne Rooney is suspended and with his club-mate looking increasingly likely to be ruled out, the onus is on the Liverpool hitman to produce the goods for Roy Hodgson's side

Andy Carroll is set to start up front for England in their Euro 2012 opener against France after Danny Welbeck limped out of training on Thursday.

Welbeck has been suffering with an ankle problem since the Manchester derby and could not take part in a practice match at the training session at Manchester City’s Etihad Stadium, ahead of England’s friendly with Norway on Saturday.

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With Wayne Rooney suspended for the first two games, Roy Hodgson only has two fit strikers available, but defender Joleon Lescott believes Carroll is up to the task of leading the line.

"Andy Carroll is a threat in any game," Lescott told reporters. "It’s nice to see him getting the media coverage and the high praise he deserves over the last few weeks of the season.

"I’m sure his confidence is high going into the tournament. Andy’s always a handful to play against but when his confidence is high it’s even worse.

"He has great ability, not just in the air. International football is not just about that aerial threat but not many teams have that presence in the air and he brings that to the squad.

"He’s had a good finish, been called into the squad for a major tournament so if his confidence is not high for something like this, there’s not a lot it will be high for. So you’d like to think after his last couple of games and getting called up, this is the best he’s felt about himself.”

Welbeck, meanwhile, was able to start the public training session but eventually had to separate himself from the squad and perform some lighter training. If the Manchester United striker is ruled out, Hodgson can call up Chelsea’s Daniel Sturridge as cover.

"Obviously Danny [Welbeck] hurt his ankle and did it against us," added Lescott.

"I am not sure how far he is away from playing or training. If he picks Andy, Jermain [Defoe], obviously they are all international players, they are in the squad for a reason and they can cause a different threat."

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.tvor more info.


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