England have been hit by the loss of Liverpool midfielder Adam Lallana for their internationals against Lithuania and Italy because of a groin injury.
The 26-year-old suffered the injury during his side’s 2-1 defeat against Manchester United at Anfield on Sunday which dented the Merseysiders’ hopes of qualifying for next season’s Champions League via a top-four finish.
And it has been confirmed on Monday that Lallana will not be available to Three Lions coach Roy Hodgson for Friday night’s Euro 2016 qualifier against Lithuania at Wembley and a friendly against Italy in Turin four days later.
The former Southampton star’s withdrawal is the latest blow for England as the squad was due to meet up at St George’s Park on Monday ahead of the international double-header.
Southampton goalkeeper Fraser Forster pulled out after he was stretchered from the field with a knee injury in his side’s 2-0 victory over Burnley on Saturday, while Manchester United full-back Luke Shaw has a back problem which ruled him out of the Red Devils’ 2-1 win at Anfield.
QPR goalkeeper Rob Green and Stoke City’s Jack Butland have been called up to replace Forster, while Shaw has been replaced by Tottenham left-back Danny Rose.
Hodgson could be hit by another injury blow with Lallana’s Liverpool team-mate and striker Daniel Sturridge also believed to be struggling for fitness after picking up a knock to his hip after scoring against Louis van Gaal’s top-four hopefuls at the weekend.