England’s Andy Carroll believes his game against Sweden was good enough to keep his place in the starting line-up for Tuesday’s clash with Ukraine.
With Wayne Rooney set to come straight into the team following his two-game suspension, it is likely Carroll or strike partner Danny Welbeck will have to make way.
Rooney has formed solid partnerships with Ashley Young and Danny Welbeck while playing with them at club level for Manchester United, meaning the obvious casualty from the team would appear to be the Liverpool forward.
But Carroll wants Roy Hodgson to select his team on merit, and believes his bullet header that opened the scoring in the Sweden match proved he is worth a place in the starting XI.
“I think I put myself about in the game against Sweden. Now I’ve just got to do that in training and try to keep my place,” Carroll told The Mail on Sunday.
“Obviously, Wayne is a fantastic player with great qualities and we need him in the team. I would love to play alongside him – any player would – and I’ve never had that chance before.”
The former Newcastle man praised the delivery of his club and international team-mate Steven Gerrard, who set up that opening goal against the Swedes.
“It was a great ball in by Stevie and I just had to get my head on it and get it on target,” he said.
“I thought it was a great win. We stuck together as a team. We got the three points, which is what mattered. We showed what we’re about after we went behind and came back really well.”
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