Hodgson Confirms Gerrard Will be Fit For Italy Match

England boss Roy Hodgson has confirmed that Steven Gerrard has been taken off as a precaution, but the Liverpool midfielder should be fit for the opening match against Italy without a doubt. England have been one of the teams that have not been hit by a number of injury problems going into the World Cup 2014. However, the jinx appeared to hit them when Gerrard left the training very early on Monday. Along with Gerard, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain is the only other major injury worry. Hodgson has given his latest fitness updates for the national team ahead of the World Cup.

He says that Gerrard should be in the starting line-up against Italy without any doubt. The match against Italy on Saturday will be the tournament opening encounter for the English. England, however, are not as lucky with regard to the other injury worry, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain. Hodgson says that the Arsenal midfielder could only return to first-team action by the final group match against Uruguay. The youngster suffered a knee injury while playing in the 2-2 draw against Ecuador a few days ago.

Gerrard will be the captain of the national team with Chelsea star Frank Lampard assisting him as the vice-captain. Hodgson picked a young team with the likes of Ross Barkley and Raheem Sterling in the squad.

"There is nothing wrong with Steven Gerrard. I don't really understand [claims Gerrard is unfit]. My understanding is yesterday he did some extra work. There is absolutely nothing wrong with him. Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain did well yesterday and we will be stepping up his training programme during the course of the week. The medics are hopeful he will be fit by the second game [against Uruguay],” said the England manager.

England failed to win both of their recent warm-up friendly matches against Ecuador and Honduras.