England manager Roy Hodgson has ruled captain Wayne Rooney out of his side’s match against Lithuania on Monday, meaning he will miss both games during the international break.
The Manchester United striker had already been confirmed as unavailable for Friday’s game against Estonia, where he will receive a golden boot from Bobby Charlton after breaking the country’s goalscoring record last time out against Switzerland.
Now, though, Hodgson has confirmed he will not be risked for the Lithuania game either, with England’s ticket to Euro 2016 already sealed before their final two qualifiers take place.
“It is a disappointment for Wayne of course,” the manager said ahead of the clash with Estonia. “He is not the type of player who likes to miss games.
“He received a knock playing against Arsenal, the ankle is settling down very well but we don’t want to risk him.
“He has a lot of Manchester United games ahead and I would be devastated if something happened out there and increased his problem. The important thing now is for Wayne to fully recover from this minor injury and be fully fit the next time Manchester United play Saturday week.
“It is disappointing for us and for Wayne but good for Gary Cahill to have the chance to captain the team and the presentation will still take place to Wayne.
“Wayne has been keen to stay with us and be part of post-match meetings, and of course he is looking forward to Bobby Charlton presenting him with his golden boot.”
Hodgson was reluctant to comment on the FIFA suspensions of Sepp Blatter and Michel Platini, who the FA continue to back for the presidency.
He continued: “Everything to do with FIFA and the FA is a subject and a matter for the board of the FA headed up by Greg Dyke, whatever they are saying is fine by me.
“I don’t want to add my voice on the subject because that is not my realm of the FA.
“My realm is coaching the England football team.”