English Premiership

Hodgson backs Lambert switch

2014-06-01 18:51
undefined
Rickie Lambert (AFP Photo)

London - England manager Roy Hodgson has publicly given his backing to striker Rickie Lambert's impending transfer from Southampton to Liverpool.

Lambert, 32, underwent a medical examination in Liverpool on Saturday with a view to a move that will reportedly cost an initial 4 million ($6.7 million, 4.9 million euros), rising to 9 million with add-ons.

A former Liverpool trainee, Lambert has emerged as an important squad player for England since scoring against Scotland with his first touch as an international footballer in a friendly last year.

He is a member of the 23-man World Cup squad that will fly to Miami on Sunday for a pre-tournament training camp and Hodgson said that his move to Anfield would be good news for the national side.

"He's very happy. I'm happy for him," Hodgson told reporters after England beat Peru 3-0 in a friendly at Wembley Stadium on Friday.

"I congratulate Liverpool on signing a good player and I'm sure that on Wednesday, when he plays against Ecuador, you'll see a fella running around with all the joy that his heart can muster.

"He's very happy to be here with England and he's very happy that the move has gone through to Liverpool."

Liverpool are also reported to have tabled a 25 million bid for Lambert's Southampton colleague Adam Lallana, who caught the eye against Peru with an enterprising performance.

Luke Shaw is expected to leave Southampton during the close season as well, amid interest from Manchester United, and Hodgson expressed sympathy for the south coast club, who finished eighth in the Premier League.

"It's a pity for Southampton because they've been terrific this year and I congratulate them enormously," he said.

"But unfortunately there are always bigger fish in the sea and it's hard to keep those bigger fish away sometimes."

- Hodgson laments Rooney 'obsession' -

While Lambert, who hails from Liverpool, is riding the crest of a wave, his fellow forward Wayne Rooney found himself criticised in some quarters after a lacklustre showing against Peru.

The United striker, who is recovering from a groin injury, failed to impress before being withdrawn in the 66th minute.

Instead it was strike partner Daniel Sturridge who took the plaudits for a fine 32nd-minute opener, but Hodgson said that it was unrealistic to expect Rooney to be England's match-winner in every game.

"I think it's a bit sad that the country is so Wayne Rooney-obsessed," he said.

"I don't think Wayne sets himself up to be anything other than a very, very important member of the squad, someone who does his best and tries his best at all times.

"As far as I'm concerned, talk about combinations doesn't interest me. All I want is for Wayne Rooney to play well and Daniel Sturridge to play well and to score goals and to create goals.

"That's what they're in the team for and that's what we work hard to help them to do as a team, but certainly we don't have the same obsession with Wayne or Daniel."

He added: "I'm not focusing on one individual. I don't come to press conferences thinking as I walk in, 'What am I going to say about Wayne Rooney or Steven Gerrard today?'

"Steven or Wayne have never asked to be elevated to the position where they are now. They've got there because they're good footballers and they deserve to be there."

After playing Ecuador and Honduras in Miami, England will open their World Cup campaign against Italy in the Brazilian city of Manaus on June 14.

While England's defence essentially picks itself, Hodgson said that the attacking roles in his starting XI were still up for grabs -- suggesting that Rooney's place is far from secure.

"Once you get past Steven Gerrard in the midfield, there's five positions to fill and I think there's quite a lot of options there," he said.

NEXT ON SPORT24X

 

Read News24’s Comments Policy

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
0 comments
Add your comment
Comment 0 characters remaining
Live Video Streaming
Video Highlights
Sport Talk

 

Watch: 2015 Absa Cape Epic route

The route of the 2015 Absa Cape Epic has been announced and it promises to be as challenging as ever!

 
 

Where were you when you last felt alive?

4 exercise excuses and how to beat them
Watch: Insane road bike skills!
The most extreme journey ever?
Red Bull Lionheart trail run - not for the fainthearted!
Fixtures
25 October 2014
West Ham United v Manchester City, Boleyn Ground 13:45
Liverpool v Hull City, Anfield 16:00
Southampton v Stoke City, St. Mary's Stadium 16:00
Sunderland v Arsenal, Stadium of Light 16:00
West Bromwich Albion v Crystal Palace, The Hawthorns 16:00
Swansea City v Leicester City, Liberty Stadium 18:30
26 October 2014
Burnley v Everton, Turf Moor 15:30
Tottenham Hotspur v Newcastle United, White Hart Lane 15:30
Manchester United v Chelsea, Old Trafford 18:00
27 October 2014
Queens Park Rangers v Aston Villa, Loftus Road Stadium 22:00
Logs
Team P W PTS
Previous Results

Date Home Team Result Away Team
Vote

How long will Mario Balotelli last at Liverpool?

 
 
Men
Women
Love 2 Meet
Featured

Got something you'd like to get off your chest? Got a burning desire to air an opinion? If so, be sure to sign-up on Sport24's FORUM!

Latest blogs
 

Twitter Follow Sport24 on Twitter

Facebook "Like" Sport24's Facebook page

Newsletters Sign up for the Morning Glory, Super 15 and Soccer newsletters

WIN Enter and win with Sport24!

Mobile Sport24 on your mobile phone - WAP, alerts, downloads, services

Forum Have your Say on Sport24's brand new Forum!

BlackBerry Stay in the loop on your BlackBerry

iPhone Latest Sport24 news on your iPhone

RSS Feeds Sport news delivered really simply.

Blogs Yes your opinion counts. Get it out there

 
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.