LONDON (Sporting Alert) — Danny Welbeck is the starting striker for England as manager Roy Hodgson named his starting XI for the EURO 2012 warm-up clash against Belgium at Wembley.
The Manchester United, who was doubtful because of an injury, trained well the last couple of days and has replaced Andy Carroll in the starting side, which defeated Norway in England’s last outing a week ago.
Manchester United’s Ashley Young, who netted the early winner last Saturday and Arsenal’s Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, who made his debut as a substitute last week, will partner Welbeck in the attack as Hodgson made seven changes from last week’s friendly
Hodgson is hoping to win his first game as boss at Wembley, but is more hoping for his team to play good football ahead of the EURO tournament.
“I want the players to go and show how enthusiastic they are about this tournament, how determined they are to work their socks off to get the best results possible,” he said.
“I want them to show that their attitude towards this tournament is going to be: ‘No fair-minded person will be able to say we didn’t give our best, we didn’t work hard enough or want it badly enough.’ If they can give a performance that, in some way, shows that then it’ll make me happy.
Joe Hart is also starting today in place of Robert Green, with John Terry, Gary Cahill and Ashley Cole also starting, alongside Glen Johnson.
Meanwhile, Wayne Rooney, who is banned for the opening two games, is amongst the substitutes, with Carroll, Stewart Downing and Jordan Henderson.
Chelsea new recruit Eden Hazard heads up the strong Belgium line-up. Manchester City defender and captain Vincent Kompany got injured during the warm up and will not feature.
England v Belgium
Belgium: Mignolet, G Gillet, Vertonghen, Kompany (c), Vermaelen, Mertens, Witsel, Mirallas, Hazard, Fellaini, Dembele.
Subs: Renard, Simons, De Camargo, Pocognoli, Chadli, Benteke, Vossen, Lukaku, Odoi, Nainggolan, De Ceulaer, Defour.
England: Hart, Johnson, Cahill, Terry, Cole, Milner, Gerrard, Parker, Young, Oxlade-Chamberlain, Welbeck
Subs: Jones, Green, Baines, Lescott, Jagielka, Henderson, Downing, Defoe, Rooney, Carroll, Walcott, Butland.