ENGLAND boss Roy Hodgson could throw prolific Tottenham striker Harry Kane straight into his starting line-up for the Euro2016 qualifier against Lithuania after Daniel Sturridge was last night forced to withdraw from the squad.
Sturridge suffered a hip injury during Liverpool’s Premier League defeat to Manchester United on Sunday and has been ruled out of Friday’s Wembley clash as well as next Tuesday’s friendly with Italy in Turin following assessment by England’s medical team upon arrival at St George’s Park yesterday.
The 25-year-old only returned to action at the end of January following almost five months out with a thigh injury sustained while on England duty. Sturridge’s woe could open the door for Kane, who celebrated his England call-up with a hat-trick for Spurs against Leicester City on Saturday, taking his tally for the season to 29 goals in 43 games.
Uncapped midfielder Ryan Mason, meanwhile, has increased Tottenham’s representation in the squad to five players after receiving his first senior call-up following the withdrawal of Liverpool playmaker Adam Lallana with a groin injury.
The need for midfield cover was intensified by Aston Villa’s Fabian Delph missing training yesterday due to a stomach upset, although he is expected to link up with the squad later this week. Mason has forced his way into Spurs boss Mauricio Pochettino’s plans this season and joins club teammates Kane, Andros Townsend, Danny Rose and Kyle Walker in the squad.