New faces in the England squad as Southampton boys recognized with call-up

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With Ricky Lambert’s dream England debut still fresh in the memory banks, two of his club teammates will be hoping to emulate his early success.

Lambert will be joined in the next international break by Southampton teammates Adam Lallana and Jay Rodriguez (pictured), both deserved call-ups into the England squad.

With Southampton sitting in sixth place and challenging even the best the Premier League has to offer for three points weekly, it’s no surprise manager Roy Hodgson has decided to bring in the pair.

Lallana especially has been rampant on the wing for the Saints, tearing apart defenses and displaying both a pinpoint cross and the ability to bring the ball into the box himself.  It’s not his first call into the England squad, but it does represent maybe his best chance at getting his first cap.

However, the call-up may be more meaningful for striker Jay Rodriguez, it being his first.  The Burnley native is eligible to play for Spain through his father, but at 24 years old it would seem England is no doubt the best choice for him, and with the World Cup just a year away it couldn’t come at a better time.

With Southampton making serious Premier League noise, it’s a fantastic job by Roy Hodgson to recognize the potential in its homegrown players.

And with England having already made it into the World Cup setting, Hodgson is now tasked with finding exactly the right fits for his squad.  It would seem Southampton has caught his eye.

Also of note, with Joe Hart losing his place at Manchester City, Roy Hodgson acknowledged that he will use the friendlies against Chile and Germany to get either Frasier Forster or John Ruddy some experience, although he did say Hart will start at least one of the matches.

England squad:

Goalkeepers – Joe Hart, Frasier Forster, John Ruddy.

Defenders – Leighton Baines, Gary Cahill, Ashley Cole, Kieran Gibbs, Phil Jagielka, Glen Johnson, Phil Jones, Chris Smalling, Kyle Walker.

Midfielders – Frank Lampard, Steven Gerrard, Ross Barkley, Michael Carrick, Adam Lallana, Tom Cleverly, Jordan Henderson, Jack Wilshere, James Milner, Andros Townsend.

Forwards – Danny Welbeck, Wayne Rooney, Daniel Sturridge, Ricky Lambert, Jay Rodriguez, Jermain Defoe.

Players who survived Chapecoense plane crash tell their story

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On November 28, 2016 a plane crashed into a mountainous region outside the Colombian city of Medellin due to a lack of fuel, killing 71 of the 77 passengers on board.

It was carrying players, coaches, officials and journalists from Brazil to Colombia as Chapecoense were set to play in the biggest game in club history.

A team from Brazil’s top-flight was on the verge of its greatest moment when disaster struck.

Only three of the 22 Chapecoense players on board survived the crash.

Neto, Jakson Follmann and Alan Ruschel were the three survivors and all three have been telling their story to the Players’ Tribune in the story titled: “Tomorrow Belongs to God.”

In this piece (see the video above, also) Neto, Follmann and Ruschel go back and forth describing the crash, the aftermath and how they feel today with Neto and Ruschel able to play for Chapecoense once again, while goalkeeper Jakson had to have one of his legs amputated after the crash.

Jakson revealed that, for some reason, he pestered his close friend Ruschel to come and sit next to him on the plane rather than at the back just 30 minutes before the crash. They both survived.

Neto reveals how he woke up before the trip having had a horrible nightmare where he was in a plane but walked away. The dream was so vivid he told his wife and even text her to pray for him before the flight took off.

Below is an excerpt from Neto which opens up the incredibly emotional account from the trio.

I dreamed that it would happen. A few days before we were supposed to leave for the Copa Sudamericana finals in Colombia, I had a terrible nightmare. When I woke up, I told my wife that I had been in a plane crash. I was in the airplane at night, and there was a lot of rain. Then the plane shut off. It fell from the sky. But somehow I could stand up from the wreckage. I walked out and was on a mountain at night. Everything was dark. That’s all I remembered.

On the day of the trip to the finals, I couldn’t get the nightmare out of my mind. The dream was so vivid. It was hammering in my mind. So I sent a message to my wife from the airplane. I told her to pray to God to protect me from that dream. I didn’t want to believe that it was really going to happen. But I asked her to pray for me.

Stats behind Wayne Rooney’s record-breaking England career

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We all know Wayne Rooney was England’s all-time record goalscorer, but what other numbers will define his international career?

[ VIDEO: Rooney’s top five England goals

Rooney, 31, retired from Three Lions duty on Wednesday after scoring 53 goals in 119 games for England over the past 14 years.

Despite his incredible longevity England’s most-capped outfield player (second only behind goalkeeper Peter Shilton) will look back on his international career with some regret as his record in major tournaments was nowhere near what he would have hoped for.

[ MORE: Twitter reacts to Rooney’s retirement

Via Opta, below are the key stats behind Rooney’s record-breaking England career.

  • Rooney scored 53 goals and collected 20 assists in his 119 appearances for England
  • Overall his England career he created 192 goalscoring chances and recorded 380 shots
  • He struggled to impose his quality for England at international tournaments – scoring just seven goals in 21 apps in World Cup/EURO finals combined.
  • Rooney scored just once in 11 World Cup games for England, attempting 21 shots across the 2006, 2010 and 2014 tournaments
  • Following his breakthrough tournament at EURO 2004, Rooney scored just three goals and assisted another in 17 tournament appearances.
  • His conversion rate of shots since the start of the 2006 World Cup in international tournaments for England was just 6.4%.
  • During his England career, Rooney managed an impressive ratio of scoring every 156.1 minutes in competitive games – a higher ratio than in non-competitive friendlies.
  • Only Ashley Cole (22) has more appearances in major tournaments than Wayne Rooney who had 21 alongside Steven Gerrard

Twitter reacts to Wayne Rooney’s England retirement

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Wayne Rooney has retired from international duty and tributes have been pouring in for England’s all-time leading goalscorer.

[ VIDEO: Rooney’s top five England goals ]

Rooney, 31, made the announcement on Wednesday and he ends his England career with 53 goals in 119 games, having appeared in six major tournaments for the Three Lions.

[ MORE: Rooney retires from England

Below is a look at some of the best reaction from players, clubs, pundits and celebrities to Rooney’s decision to call it quits.


VIDEO: Watch Wayne Rooney’s top five England goals

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Can we decide on Wayne Rooney‘s top five goals for the English national team?

[ MORE: Rooney retires from England ]

After the England captain stepped down from international duty on Wednesday, aged 31, now seems like a good time to look back at his best strikes for the Three Lions.

[ MORE: Twitter reacts to Rooney’s retirement ]

My word, there are a lot to choose from as England’s all-time leading goalscorer struck 53 times in 119 appearances for his country.

Click play on the video above to see Rooney’s top five goals in an England jersey, according to the FA.