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Martinez's woe at wretched Everton

Everton
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Sturridge injury a 'blow' for England

England manager Roy Hodgson believes his side have been hit by a "major blow" after striker Daniel Sturridge was forced off injured in the 1-1 friendly draw against Ireland.

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Sturridge only lasted 33 minutes of the match before a tangle with Glenn Whelan forced the Liverpool attacker from the field.

The incident occurred only moments after the 23-year-old crossed for Frank Lampard to score England's equaliser.

And Hodgson was confident that if Sturridge had remained on the field, the Three Lions may have snatched a resounding victory.

"It is a major blow for him, and for us," said Hodgson. "Daniel had started the game so well, and the way we played in the second half with Sturridge in top form we might have created even more.

"I don't want to say it's a serious injury, but it'll keep him out for a period of time. I don't think anything's broken, but we think it's ligaments the doctor and the orthopaedic surgeon will have to contact Liverpool."

Sturridge will definitely miss the glamour tie against Brazil, but more devastating for Hodgson, leaves his squad bare thin for striking options.

Along with Sturridge, Manchester United striker Danny Welbeck is also recovering from a knee injury which kept him out of the game against Ireland.

But despite rating Welbeck's injury as "touch and go", Hodgson was confident there was at least one in-form forward who could lead the line against the Brazilian.

"(Wayne Rooney) did a lot of good things," said Hodgson. "He was very much involved in most of our attacking play. I was satisfied with his performance."

On Sturridge Hodgson added: "He wasn't on the bench. He went out for a run yesterday, and did an hour's work in the gym.

"The swelling in his knee has gone down. It's a question of whether we've got enough time between tomorrow and Sunday whether he plays.

"It will be touch and go, but he's not ruled out."

Information from the Press Association was used in this report.

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