LONDON: England have been dealt another massive injury blow after Chelsea central defender Gary Cahill was ruled out of Euro 2012 with a double fracture of his jaw.
Cahill was injured when he was pushed into goalkeeper Joe Hart during the first half of Saturday’s 1-0 win over Belgium at Wembley. He was immediately sent for X-rays and manager Roy Hodgson’s worst fears have been confirmed. Liverpool’s Martin Kelly has been called up as a replacement.
England have now lost three players after midfield duo Gareth Barry and Frank Lampard also had their hopes of taking part in the finals in Poland and Ukraine dashed. Reserve goalkeeper John Ruddy was also ruled out after breaking a finger in training.
The one piece of good news for Hodgson is that John Terry should be available after scans showed he had suffered no serious damage to a hamstring.
An FA statement read: “Gary Cahill has been withdrawn from England’s Euro 2012 squad following the injury he suffered in the match against Belgium.
“The Chelsea defender has two fractures of his jaw, one either side. The England medical team have been in close contact overnight with Cahill’s club doctors who will treat him moving forward.
“Liverpool defender Martin Kelly will be called into the squad – subject to agreement from UEFA’s medical team. Kelly trained with the England players last week and was part of the group that travelled to Norway.
“John Terry has been scanned this morning and given the all-clear. He will be re-assessed on Tuesday when the team regroup.”
Manchester United’s Rio Ferdinand was not contacted as a potential replacement. Hodgson thought that Kelly, who made his international debut as a late substitute against Norway last week, would need less time to get fully fit.
The wisdom of that decision is bound to be questioned, particularly as Hodgson has lost so much experience.
England’s defence for the Group D opener against France in Donetsk on June 11 is likely to see Terry partnered by Joleon Lescott who substituted for the former Bolton man against Belgium.
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