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England Vs San Marino: Team News, Match Stats, Predicted Line-Ups And More

by Christian Bailey

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Soccer - UEFA Euro 2012 - Qualifying - Group G - England v Wales - Wembley Stadium

England take on minnows at Wembley.

Check-in to England vs San Marino!

England squad

Goalkeepers: Fraser Forster (Celtic), Joe Hart (Manchester City), John Ruddy (Norwich)

Defenders: Leighton Baines (Everton), Gary Cahill (Chelsea), Ashley Cole (Chelsea), Phil Jagielka (Everton), Glen Johnson (Liverpool), Joleon Lescott (Manchester City), Ryan Shawcross (Stoke), Kyle Walker (Tottenham)

Midfielders: Michael Carrick (Manchester United), Tom Cleverley (Manchester United), Steven Gerrard (Liverpool), Adam Johnson (Sunderland), Aaron Lennon (Tottenham), James Milner (Manchester City), Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain (Arsenal), Jonjo Shelvey (Liverpool), Theo Walcott (Arsenal)

Forwards: Andy Carroll (West Ham), Jermain Defoe (Tottenham), Wayne Rooney (Manchester United), Danny Welbeck (Manchester United)

Team News

Roy Hodgson is expected to keep faith in twitter-fiend Ashely Cole, despite the magnificent form of Everton’s Leighton Baines, meaning the Chelsea full-back should win his 100th cap next week. Kyle Walker of Spurs can expect to deputise on the other side of defence in the absence of Glen Johnson.

With Steven Gerrard and Frank Lampard out, there may be an all Manchester United central midfield pairing of Michael Carrick and Tom Cleverley, while James Milner and Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, Hodgson’s two darlings, should keep their places out-wide.

Up-front, in form Tottenham striker Jermain Defoe will hope he’s done enough to partner England’s latest captain, Wayne Rooney, but the likes of Theo Walcott, Andry Carroll and Theo Walcott will be chomping at the bit to be involved in this expected goal-fest.

CaughtOffside’s predicted England XI (we’ve gone for a wonky Football Manager-style line-up):

football formations

San Marino likely line-up (if you’re interested): A Simoncini, F Vitaoli, D Simoncini, Della Valle, Brolli, Matteo, Cervellini Gasperoni, Marani, M Vitaoli, Rinaldi

Check-in to England vs San Marino!

Stat Attack:

England have played San Marino twice before and won both matches, with an Englishman scoring four goals in both. In the first a 6-0 win at Wembley in February 1993, David Platt scored a hatful, before Ian Wright managed the same feat in a 7-1 win in November 1993.

In the 7-1 win, San Marino took the lead on 8.3 seconds through Davide Gualtieri, still the fastest ever goal in Fifa World Cup history. It was Graham Taylor last match as England boss.

England have not lost any of the nine matches (excluding penalties) they have played since Roy Hodgson took over as manager (W6 D3 L0).

Only twice in their last 36 home World Cup qualifiers have England tasted defeat (W26 D8 L2).

San Marino last tasted victory in an international match was on 27th April 2004 when they beat Liechtenstein 1-0 in a friendly. It remains their only win.

If selected twitter-lover Ashley Cole will earn his 99th England cap against San Marino, and could reach 100 caps against Poland on Tuesday.

If captain Wayne Rooney scores it will be his 30th England strike, putting him level on international goals with Nat Lofthouse, Alan Shearer and Tom Finney but some way behind record holder Bobby Charlton, who has 49.

Jermain Defoe is a man in form for his country. The Spurs striker has scored 17 goals in his last 19 starts for England.

San Marino are listed joint 207th in the Fifa rankings with only Turks & Caicos Islands below them.

Manager Giampaolo Mazza is a PE teacher in San Marino. He has managed the team since 1998.

The visitors’ biggest ever away defeat came in Euro 2012 qualifying when they lost 11-0 to Netherlands, with Robin van Persie bagging four goals.

The population of San Marino is just over 31,000, which would fit inside Southampton’s St Mary’s Stadium.

CaughtOffside Prediction: Hard to see past a comprehensive England victory: we’ll go 5-0.

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