I did nothing wrong! England boss Hodgson remains bullish over handling of Sterling saga

first_img1 England manager Roy Hodgson still believes he handled the recent Raheem Sterling saga in the right way.Hodgson sparked a media storm by revealing the Liverpool teenager had complained of tiredness on the eve of England’s Euro 2016 qualifier with Estonia.Sterling subsequently saw his commitment to his country questioned, while Hodgson was accused of betraying the player’s trust.But the Three Lions boss, who has named the 19-year-old in his squad for the upcoming games against Slovenia and Scotland, maintains the whole episode was blown out of proportion, and he insists his relationship with Sterling has not been damaged in any way.“I’m disappointed for him and he knows that but our relationship’s a very good one,” Hodgson said.“If you say there’s things to learn, we will probably both learn from them, although I don’t really understand how it’s a clear mistake to tell the truth when you’re asked questions about why you’ve not chosen a player.“He did nothing wrong and I’ve got to be honest I don’t think I did anything wrong either. I’ve great respect for Raheem Sterling. I agree with Steven Gerrard – I think he’s going to do wonderful things for England in the future.”Hodgson also maintains there are no issues with Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers over whether Daniel Sturridge would have been fit enough for international duty.The Reds striker has become an important part of the senior squad, but has been hampered by injuries this season, the latest being a calf problem.He has not played since he strained a thigh muscle just before England’s clash with Switzerland in September.Hodgson left a message for Rodgers about Sturridge’s fitness ahead of naming his squad for the upcoming Euro 2016 qualifier against Slovenia and friendly in Scotland.The England manager was not concerned there had been no direct reply from the Reds boss, whose side tackle Premier League leaders Chelsea on Saturday lunchtime.Asking about the prospect of calling up Sturridge, Hodgson said on Thursday: “That was never a realistic possibility. He is still recovering from the calf injury he picked up.“It is unfortunate. We were hoping, of course, to get him back, but it hasn’t worked out. Our medical staff have had contact.“I have left a message for Brendan. The message was that it is pretty obvious that Daniel is not fit, and Brendan’s not rung back to counter that he actually is.”Hodgson stressed nothing untoward should be read into the lines of communication between national team manager and club boss.“I left a message for him only last night. Basically it was to tell him that I understood Daniel Sturridge was not fit and there was no need to call me back,” Hodgson added.“It was just to let him know I understood Daniel Sturridge was not fit for these games, so in any questions I was going to get today then the answers I was going to give he would understand them and be happy with, hopefully.” England boss Roy Hodgson last_img read more