Roy Hodgson says Michael Carrick's strange injury isn't serious

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England manager Roy Hodgson says the calf injury that forced Michael Carrick to withdraw from international duty is strange, but does not think it is serious.

The Manchester United midfielder has struggled with a succession of setbacks over the past 12 months, limiting him to just 16 starts in last season's Premier League campaign.

Having started four of United's six competitive games this season, there was hope that the 34-year-old had overcome his niggling problems and could contribute to a crucial campaign.


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But those problems returned on Saturday. A calf injury sustained during the warm-up for the 6-0 win over San Marino left Manchester United fans fearing the worst.

Hodgson, however, has played down the injury, giving Louis van Gaal hope that Carrick could return for the upcoming game against Liverpool.

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"It's up to Manchester United to look at it much more closely. We don't believe it's a long-term injury."

Very, very slight

"It's a calf injury," Hodgson told reporters ahead of England's game against Switzerland.

"We don't believe it's that serious. It's quite strange. It came out of nowhere almost. It was at the start of a warm-up in San Marino. He felt something very, very small, very, very slight.

"He had a preliminary type of scan with our doctors and they decided there's something there.

"It's up to Manchester United to look at it much more closely. We don't believe it's a long-term injury. But of course more than enough to keep him out of the game which both he and I are disappointed by."

A key player

With the addition of Morgan Schneiderlin and Bastian Schweinsteiger this summer, Manchester United may, at least on paper, be better able to manager without Carrick.

However, as Paul Scholes described earlier this year, Carrick's ability to protect the back four while playing in defensive midfield has regularly provided the Red Devils with a sense of stability that otherwise seems absent.

The former United midfielder said last season: "He is not a flash footballer. He doesn’t hit Hollywood passes. He doesn’t score lots of goals. But I loved playing alongside him. He was always in the right place. He gave me licence to play"

Van Gaal obviously agrees. The Dutchman offered Carrick a one-year extension on his £130,000-a-week contract earlier this year.

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Michael Carrick
England Football
Premier League
Manchester United

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