Roy Hodgson confident in defensive depth

Joleon Lescott
© PA Photos
England manager Roy Hodgson insists that Joleon Lescott and Chris Smalling are capable of coping with Montenegro's dangerous strike force.

Roy Hodgson has insisted that England's injury-blighted defence is capable of containing the threat of Montenegro strike duo Mirko Vucinic and Stefan Jovetic.

With Phil Jagielka and Gary Cahill sidelined, the Three Lions manager is likely to pair Chris Smalling and Joleon Lescott at centre-back for the crucial World Cup qualifier in Podgorica on Tuesday.

Lescott was initially omitted from the squad, while Smalling only has five international caps, but Hodgson has reiterated his faith in England's stand-in defensive lineup.

He said: "I just remind people that Joleon Lescott helped Manchester City to their first title in 40-odd years, and in Chris Smalling we have someone who's playing regularly for the champions-elect.

"It's not as if we've been forced to pick people who don't play at the highest level and I personally trust the pair of them."

Juventus forward Vucinic is Montenegro's all-time leading scorer and Jovetic has netted 12 goals for Fiorentina this season.

Michael Carrick
Read Next:
Carrick could play in England defence
>

Tables
TeamPWDLFAGDPTS
1Arsenal00000000
2Bournemouth00000000
3Burnley00000000
4Chelsea00000000
5Crystal Palace00000000
6Everton00000000
7Hull City00000000
8Leicester CityLeicester00000000
9Liverpool00000000
10Manchester CityMan City00000000
11Manchester UnitedMan Utd00000000
12Middlesbrough00000000
13Southampton00000000
14Stoke CityStoke00000000
15Sunderland00000000
16Swansea CitySwansea00000000
17Tottenham HotspurSpurs00000000
18Watford00000000
19West Bromwich AlbionWest Brom00000000
20West Ham UnitedWest Ham00000000
LIVE SCORES VIDEPRINTER
expand