Arsenal & Liverpool Sweat As Hodgson Confirms Welbeck & Sterling Injury Concerns
Arsenal and Liverpool are sweating on the fitness of Danny Welbeck and Raheem Sterling after they picked up knocks during England’s 4-0 win over Lithuania
Arsenal and Liverpool are sweating on the fitness of Danny Welbeck and Raheem Sterling after the forwards picked up knocks during England’s 4-0 win over Lithuania on Friday night.
Welbeck started the game and created the opening goal before getting himself on the score-sheet as he headed home a Jordan Henderson cross from close range via a deflection shortly before half-time.
The 24-year-old continued to impress during the second half but was forced off with 10 minutes to go after appearing to twist his knee and he was replaced by fellow Arsenal team mate Theo Walcott.
England boss Roy Hodgson confirmed to reporters after the game that Welbeck will now be assessed by the medical team and although the injury isn’t thought to be serious, he is expected to miss Tuesday’s friendly with Italy.
Sterling was also in fine form as he made it 3-0 in the second half with a close range finish before setting up Tottenham striker Harry Kane to make it 4-0 late on.
However, the Liverpool attacker has been carrying a toe problem and Hodgson also confirmed after the match that the youngster will now be forced to have an injection in the injury and will also sit out of Tuesday’s trip to Italy.
“It’s two blows in a way because I’ve always known Raheem Sterling has been waiting for an injection in his toe – he has been playing through an injury for a while now,”
“He does ever so well when he does play through it but I’ve always known that he needed this injection.
“I agreed with he and Brendan that he would play tonight’s game which is of course the qualifier, but that he would have the injection.
“If we’re unlucky we’re going to lose him and Welbeck, which is a blow for us, not only because they played well tonight but because they’re an important part of a system that we’re trying to play.
“Welbeck’s injury towards the end of the game which will probably keep him out of Tuesday’s game, it’s a little bit unfortunate for a game that means a lot to us going back to Italy that we are going to be short of a few players,”
“It’s a tweak to the knee, he’s being assessed by the medical staff now. We won’t get a clear idea until tomorrow. The medical staff have given me the impression they aren’t terribly worried but Tuesday may be too soon.” Hodgson told reporters.
Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger will be sweating on the fitness of Welbeck as he may now be considered a doubt to face Liverpool next weekend.
Sterling’s injury is more long-standing and it sounds like this injection was pre-planned but it remains to be seen whether he’ll be back in time for the trip to the Emirates next Saturday.