Ian Wright: Roy Hodgson got it wrong over Grant Holt’s England snub

Former England striker Ian Wright believes Grant Holt should have been given a chance in Norway ahead of the European Championships.

But the ex-Arsenal man feels the Norwich City skipper's international time could still come after the summer.

Holt missed out on a first England call as Roy Hodgson selected his opening squad and stand-by list as manager with France, Ukraine and Sweden awaiting in the group stages of Euro 2012 in Poland and Ukraine.

There had been some clamour for Holt to be included given Wayne Rooney was the only Englishman to out-score him in the Premier League this season – and Wright's views on the subject are clear.

'The only player I feel desperately sorry for is Grant Holt,' said Wright, who writes a weekly column in The Sun. 'I am extremely surprised he was not given a chance, even in the Norway friendly.


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'He was our second highest English scorer and should have been given an opportunity in Norway as we had nothing to lose.

'He has been excellent and is better on the ground than some people give him credit for.'

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Liverpool full-back Martin Kelly was among a handful of players involved in Saturday's 1-0 friendly win in Oslo who are not expected to be on the plane to Krakow.

City goalkeeper John Ruddy was also set to earn his first cap until a broken finger in training ended his England efforts before they had properly started.

And while Holt will have been disappointed to miss out this summer Wright feels if City talisman Holt can maintain his form at the beginning of 2012-13, then Hodgson may finally come calling as England embark on qualification for the 2014 World Cup in Brazil.

'If he keeps scoring goals at the start of next season, I would expect Hodgson to give him a try,' added Wright. 'It makes no different how old he is. If he is on form in the Premier League, then he should been given a chance in a friendly.

'And don't forget we had a few players on the pitch on Saturday who were not in Hodgson's Euro squad – so Holt could have been in there too.

'Right now, Hodgson's first-choice for a target man is Andy Carroll, so let's hope he scores a few goals against France and Sweden to give the England manager a major selection headache when Rooney is available again.'

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