Ashley Young an injury scare ahead of England's quarter-final against Italy
Manchester United winger Ashley Young is to be monitored by England's medical staff today after injuring his knee in a challenge with Andriy Shevchenko in England's 1-0 win over co-hosts Ukraine that sealed qualification as group winners and earning the fixture against Italy on Sunday. Young was seen limping on to the team bus after the win over Ukraine and will be assessed ahead of training where the medical team will be hoping to determine the midfielder's chances of facing Italy.
Young has started all three of England's games so far and seems to be a key figure in Roy Hodgson's plans but was widely criticised for his performance against Ukraine. Brian Durand (@BriandDurand56) tweeted during the match, "Once again I am asking myself ... Is Ashley Young actually playing in this match????", while avid tweeter and outspoken journalist Piers Morgan (@piersmorgan) called for Oxlade-Chamberlain to replace the forward, "Ashley Young's been MIA for last 40 minutes - give The Ox a burst, Roy."
If Young isn't fit in time then Chamberlain may well be in line for his second start of the tournament but Hodgson does have options on the left with Stewart Downing and James Milner also able to play on the left. 18 year-old Jossy Starkie (@JossStarkie) would like to see Rooney play wide if Young is unavailable, tweeting, "if ashley young is injured for the italy game, either put on the ox or put rooney out left with carroll and welbeck up top".
Meanwhile the England team have received a boost in the shape of Jermain Defoe who will join up with the squad tomorrow after attending his father's funeral. Defoe had returned home following the death of his father, Jimmy, on June 7 four days before England's opener against France.