Hodgson keeping an eye on Latics star

Callum McManaman
Callum McManaman

CALLUM McManaman still has a chance to go to the World Cup next year, according to England coach Roy Hodgson.

Despite never being selected to represent his country at under-21 or elite level, the Latics winger has been told that should he impress this season, he could be given the nod.

Hodgson was making the point that there were still places available in his squad to go to Brazil and that he is keeping a close eye on McManaman’s progress.

The Latics winger was in superb form towards the end of last season and put in a man of the match in the FA Cup final before suffering a serious knee injury four days later at Arsenal.

Hodgson said: “We have been following his progress. I mention him as a player who burst onto the scene at the end of last year and unfortunately disappeared through no fault of his own - he got that very nasty injury.

“There are certain players like that who are off the immediate radar - your (the media immediate radar - but they aren’t out of our radar.

“I would be lying if I didn’t say he has a lot to do because, quite simply, in his absence other players have come forward and staked a pretty strong claim.

“He would have to be doing something exceptional to knock them off their perch for this particular tournament. But it is certainly not impossible. As I said earlier today, ‘Who knows?’

“Out of the players who, at the moment, we would sit down and say, ‘These are pretty certain to go’, and there wouldn’t be a lot of dissent in the room - who knows if all of those will be fit and available to go?”