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Page last updated at 15:09 GMT, Friday, 19 November 2010

Liverpool boss Roy Hodgson angry over Gerrard injury

Steven Gerrard
Gerrard has scored seven goals in 15 appearances for Liverpool this season

Liverpool boss Roy Hodgson said he was "disappointed and a little bit angry" about losing Steven Gerrard to an injury suffered in an England friendly.

The Reds captain faces three to four weeks out because of a grade two hamstring tear suffered in England's 2-1 defeat by France on Wednesday.

The 30-year-old went off after 84 minutes despite Liverpool requesting that he only play for an hour.

Hodgson said he and Gerrard wanted to draw a line under the matter.

The former Fulham boss stated: "As Liverpool manager I am frustrated and disappointed to lose such an important player for such a long period of time.

Hodgson 'angry' to lose injured Gerrard

"Anything I say - other than I am disappointed and even a little bit angry about it - would be dishonest.

"But I know Steven, as an important player for club and country, is keen to put a tin lid on the matter.

"He is disappointed and sad too but he is going to do everything he can to get back to fitness as quickly as possible."

Hodgson was also rocked by Friday's news that midfielder Jay Spearing faces up to six weeks on the sidelines after suffering an ankle injury in training.

The 21-year-old turned his ankle and cracked a small bone just above the ankle in his fibia, ruining his hopes of making his first Premier League start against West Ham on Saturday.

England boss Fabio Capello has said he would speak with Hodgson to sympathise about the Gerrard situation but did not intend to apologise.

The Italian said he kept Gerrard on the pitch longer than intended against the French because he needed an experienced player on the pitch as Rio Ferdinand and Gareth Barry had been substituted because of injury at half-time.


However, at his Friday news conference, Hodgson confirmed the meeting was yet to take place.

"I don't expect apologies from anyone and I'm not prepared to add any fuel to the fire," he added.

If Gerrard is sidelined for four weeks he will miss matches against West Ham, Tottenham, Steaua Bucharest, Aston Villa, Newcastle and FC Utrecht.

The absence of such an influential player is a massive blow to the Reds as they look to turn around a disappointing start to the season in which they have only won four of their first 13 Premier League games.

After the game on Wednesday Liverpool fitness coach Darren Burgess criticised Capello and England on social media website Twitter for their extended use of Gerrard, although the posts were subsequently deleted.

"Unbelievable from all associated with England and English FA with regard to SGs [Steven Gerrard's] injury. Completely ignored agreement and past history," his first tweet read.

"Completely amateurish and now we pay for their incompetence. Absolutely disgraceful."

Capello defends Gerrard decision

Liverpool will be compensated financially for the loss of their skipper as the FA's insurance policy will cover his wages for the weeks he misses because of an injury picked up on international duty.

However, Gerrrard's absence leaves Liverpool short in central midfield for the game against West Ham as Lucas Leiva will be suspended, while Christian Poulsen has struggled to adapt to the Premier League after his summer move from Serie A side Juventus and Spearing is now injured.

Playmaker Joe Cole is also sidelined as he recovers from the hamstring strain picked up at Bolton on 31 October.

However, Hodgson has been boosted by better news on strikers Fernando Torres and Dirk Kuyt, and defenders Martin Skrtel and Glen Johnson.

Torres played the second half of Spain's defeat by Portugal after picking up an ankle injury last Saturday in the loss at Stoke.

Netherlands international Kuyt, Slovakia centre-back Skrtel and England right-back Johnson did not go on international duty as they recovered from injury and all four should be fit to face the Hammers.

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see also
Capello defends Gerrard decision
17 Nov 10 |  Football
England 1-2 France
17 Nov 10 |  Football
Injured Torres to join Spain team
14 Nov 10 |  Premier League

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