Cole included in England team

  • Last Updated: October 16 2012, 20:03 BST

Ashley Cole was handed his 99th England cap for tonight's World Cup qualifier against Poland in Warsaw.

Cole: Picked by Hodgson for Poland clash

As expected, manager Roy Hodgson made sweeping changes to his starting line-up, with six of the side that beat San Marino losing their places, including two-goal Danny Welbeck.

Cole's return was significant because it was the first time he had been chosen since the Twitter storm erupted 11 days ago that led to the Chelsea man being charged with misconduct and forced him to apologise to Football Association chairman David Bernstein.

The 31-year-old was part of a much-changed defence, with Glen Johnson returning from suspension and Joleon Lescott chosen to partner former Everton team-mate Phil Jagielka in central defence.

Like Johnson, skipper Steven Gerrard was back after serving a one-match ban, and he too was making his 99th England appearance.

Jermain Defoe edged out Welbeck for the right to partner Wayne Rooney, having done so well in the striking role during the first two games of England's World Cup qualification campaign.

Although Hodgson went for the added insurance of James Milner on the right after selecting Michael Carrick to partner Gerrard in central midfield, Manchester United midfielder Tom Cleverley retained his ever-present record this term, with Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain the man to stand down.


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