ENGLAND defender Phil Jagielka has acknowledged that manager Roy Hodgson has a substantial selection dilemma for tomorrow’s World Cup qualifier away to Poland given Leighton Baines’s impressive performance when deputising for Ashley Cole.
Everton left-back Baines has this season been consistently superb and was again convincing when Cole’s long-term ankle problem meant he would be rested from England’s 5-0 victory at home to San Marino on Friday, and club-mate Jagielka believes it is consequently going to be difficult to select between the two.
“It is not a bad headache for the manager to have. You’ve got Cole on 98 caps, a fantastic left-back, and then you've got the in-form player in the Premier League in Leighton Baines,” Jagielka said. “It is going to be a really tough decision for the manager.”
“I’m just glad I don’t have to make that decision. I think I’d be tossing a coin, heads or tails. But I’m sure the manager will make the right decision.”
One who will not be in contention is Cole’s Chelsea team-mate Ryan Bertrand, who alongside the injured Frank Lampard is unavailable to play against Poland because of illness. The defender had last week caused controversy by swearing on Twitter in response to speculation that only a sore throat was keeping him out of Friday’s fixture, and he has since decided to delete his Twitter account.
Arsenal’s Carl Jenkinson is training with the squad, but he will not be considered for selection as his presence is not the result of an official call up.