Best England XI: Premier League form 2012/13 (1)

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Football News

As England kick-off the first of two crucial World Cup qualifiers against San Marino and Montenegro this evening, GiveMeFootball has decided to delve a little deeper into the thinking behind Roy Hodgson's selection process for the forthcoming international fixtures.

Two opponents that couldn't be further apart in terms of quality, but each match offering ultimately the same reward; a total of six points towards the Three Lions' overall tally on the road to Brazil 2014.

England remain unbeaten so far, with two wins and two draws from their opening four games, which leaves them trailing Montenegro by two points in Group H ahead of Friday's round of encounters.

Hodgson spoke earlier this week of the importance of respecting every opponent, insisting tonight's clash with the world's joint lowest ranked team is by no means a formality.

San Marino come into the game at the Stadio Olimpico in Serravalle with no goals or points in their World Cup qualifying campaign so far. Add to that, the fact that the international minnows have only won one of their last 115 games and anything other than a comfortable England victory will be regarded as a major shock.

Despite England's ever increasing injury list - particularly in defence - tonight's unfamiliar starting line-up shouldn't find it too taxing to beat a San Marino side that has scored only twice in the last 25 games.

However, GMF can't help but think that Hodgson is making life as difficult as he possibly can for himself, because his England squad is missing some of the best Premier League performers this season.

Based on statistics provided by, click through the gallery to see how tonight's England team could look if players (with a minimum of 20 Premier League appearances) were selected, barring injury, based on their domestic form this season.


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