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Rio Ferdinand given first Hodgson England call-up

Manchester United defender Rio Ferdinand has earned his first England call-up under manager Roy Hodgson for the World Cup qualifiers with San Marino and Montenegro later this month.

Hodgson cited "footballing reasons" for Ferdinand's exclusion in his squad for the Euro 2012 finals and he has remained out of his plans ever since.


Baines: England battle drives me on

Leighton Baines has had a positive start to the season with the Toffees Credit: PA Images

Everton left-back Leighton Baines says the battle for the international spot has been driving him on this season.

The 27-year-old has featured for his country this season, but says with Ashely Cole the established choice back in the squad, he has a fight on his hands.

"I've been trying to keep my form up at club level between the two international breaks," he told evertontv.

"The competition for places is just the way it is. It's something you just have to accept.

"You respect the players in the squad and the other players who are in your position that much that you know you may not play.

"All you can always do is do the best you can for your club and that's what I've been trying to do."

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