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Hodgson excited about young England talent breaking through

England coach Roy Hodgson is happy to give youth its chance.

Manchester United striker Danny Welbeck struck twice against San Marino, with teammate Tom Cleverley and Arsenal's Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain also in the line-up.

Hodgson said: "Danny might not have been a surprise selection for the Euros but his name wasn't exactly on everyone's lips when I included him in the squad.

"But he handled the Euros very well and he's a young player who is learning and improving all the time.

"He has to fight very hard just to get a place in the Manchester United team with the quality of the competition he faces there. But he was one of a number of very young players on Friday and none of them disappointed.

"We had 19-year-old Oxlade-Chamberlain in the starting line-up, alongside Walker, Cleverley and Welbeck who are all in their early twenties.

"Then 20-year-old Jonjo Shelvey came on midway through the second half.

"So that's all very encouraging and I'm also heartened by the fact Jack Wilshere and Chris Smalling are both back in training and that the two young full-backs at Arsenal - Kieran Gibbs and Carl Jenkinson - are also doing very well.

"We need to come back with something in our pockets from Poland. But after that, we've got two friendlies to give these players experience - so there are quite a few reasons to be optimistic."

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Tribal Football Staff

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