Rooney injury blow leaves Pearce with striker headache for Holland friendly

I have a say

Posted Monday, February 27, 2012 by Dailymail

England will face the runners-up from the last World Cup with an alarming lack of experience.

Injuries have left Stuart Pearce horribly short of strikers. The withdrawal of Wayne Rooney with a throat infection and Darren Bent with an ankle problem has left him with the inexperienced trio of Danny Welbeck 21, Daniel Sturridge, 22, and Fraizer Campbell, 24, for Wednesday’s friendly against Holland. They have four caps between them, with three of those belonging to Welbeck.

Rooney injury blow leaves Pearce with striker headache for Holland friendly
Out of action: Wayne Rooney will not feature for England against Holland

If that doesn’t encourage the Dutch, Pearce’s decision to omit a number of his more senior centre halves certainly will. While Micah Richards can play a central role, the three centre halves the interim manager has selected have 12 caps only between them. Gary Cahill has seven of those, with Phil Jones and Chris Smalling having never previously been selected to play in that position for the senior national side.

Manchester City’s Gareth Barry is also a major doubt with a back spasm and hamstring injury.

On Sunday night, the FA suggested Pearce might call up another striker but it is unlikely to ease a problem that gives the Under 21 manager a harsh introduction to life as England boss.

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