Friday June 6 2014
‘We’re optimistic for Oxlade-Chamberlain’

Roy Hodgson says that the England camp are optimistic of Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain’s chances of playing in the World Cup.

The Arsenal winger yesterday underwent a scan on a knee injury sustained during Wednesday’s draw with Ecuador and initial reports are that he is facing up to three weeks out on the sidelines.

Even so, his Coach indicates that everyone including the player is preparing for his stay with the squad and his eventual return to the pitch during the World Cup.

“We will do everything in our power to keep him. Our medical team are optimistic and he is optimistic,” Hodgson commented during a fans' forum held in Miami.

“We can't say how long for certain it will take him to recover but obviously he will get very extensive treatment.

“We will do everything we can to keep him with us because we would we like to think we might go beyond the group stage although we can't guarantee it, we are certainly planning for it.

“He played so well yesterday [against Ecuador]. He was undoubtedly our best player in the time he played, and it would be a major blow if we lose him.

“He was back really to his best so all I can do now I suppose is cross my fingers and touch every piece of wood I pass by that it is not serious.”

During the Q&A session with supporters, Hodgson was asked whether England can win the World Cup.

“Can we win the World Cup? What makes me think we can win it is that it is a knockout competition.

“If we look at previous tournaments like [Euro] 1992, Denmark didn’t even qualify, they rounded people up from the beaches, and beat Holland on the way to the final and Germany in the final.

“We are not low down the rankings [10th] so anyone who thinks we can’t win has to be barking up the wrong tree.

“All I know is that we can work towards it, that the process of winning it is being done as perfectly as possible. With the process we have, and the staff I have, that gives us a really good chance.

“I can guarantee you that the players are 100 per cent committed to winning it even though they know it is a big ask.”

England begin their World Cup campaign in Manaus on June 14 against Group D opponents Italy. Uruguay and Costa Rica await both after that.

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