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Mancienne backed for England squad

Former Chelsea defender Michael Mancienne could solve England's defensive woes, according to Hamburg sporting director Frank Arnesen.

Mancienne made a permanent move from Stamford Bridge to Hamburg last year, and has impressed during his time in the Bundesliga.

Roy Hodgson will be without incumbent right-back Glen Johnson, while centre-back John Terry has retired from international football ahead of England's World Cup qualifiers against San Marino and Poland. Arnesen believes Mancienne could provide the Three Lions with a solution.

"If I was the coach then I would definitely look at him, absolutely," Arnesen told the Mirror. "He could be a good shout for the squad as he can play right-back and centre-back. He has been outstanding.

"We won against Hannover on Saturday and it was the best performance he's played in his 16 months since he came here.

"I think the Bundesliga is as tough as, or tougher than, the Premier League because the rhythm of the league is very high and it's physically tough.

"He has learnt so much from coming here. Not many English players go abroad but he's improved through doing it. He's developed as a player and as a person.

"He is not the tallest and yet his leap is unbelievable. He can jump so high. He is a aggressive in a good way, he is quick and good on the ball.

"When you play for England, it's a different style of football. You're playing international opponents and it helps if you've experienced playing regularly against different opponents with a different style and Michael has done that here."

England's squad for their upcoming World Cup qualifiers is due to be announced this Thursday.