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Bent blow for England

England’s attacking options for Wednesday’s World Cup qualifier against Ukraine looked set to be further reduced after Darren Bent limped out of training on the eve of the match.

Tottenham forward Bent had been a late call-up to the squad after Emile Heskey and Carlton Cole suffered injuries in Saturday’s 4-0 friendly win over Slovakia.

But his involvement with the national squad lasted only a few minutes before he was forced to head for the treatment room.

There was better news for head coach Fabio Capello on the fitness of Rio Ferdinand, who appeared to be training normally after missing the Slovakia match with a back strain.

Shaun Wright-Phillips, who missed Saturday’s game with an ankle injury, was also able to train, as was Peter Crouch, who was substituted as a precaution late on in the Slovakia match.

With four stright wins in group six, England will be in a very strong position to reach next year’s finals in South Africa if they can beat Ukraine, the only team they have yet to face.

Tue 31 Mar, 2009
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