‘The Ox’ withdraws from England squadComment on this story
London – Arsenal youngster Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain has joined the list of withdrawals from Roy Hodgson's England squad ahead of Wednesday's friendly with Italy in Bern, with Joleon Lescott being drafted in.
The winger reported for duty on Monday morning but, after picking up an ankle injury in his club's friendly against Cologne in Germany on Sunday, he was immediately released back to Arsenal.
Oxlade-Chamberlain's departure follows Sunday night's withdrawals of goalkeeper Joe Hart and attacker Daniel Sturridge.
The decision to call up Manchester City defender Lescott had already been taken before Oxlade-Chamberlain pulled out.
It means Hodgson will now take a squad of just 20 with him to the Swiss capital, with uncapped duo John Ruddy and Jack Butland the only remaining goalkeepers.
If Butland gets on the pitch it would complete the incredible achievement of earning a senior cap and playing four times for Great Britain during the Olympics despite his only senior experience at club level being 24 games in the fourth tier with Cheltenham Town.
The 19-year-old was called into Hodgson's squad for Euro 2012 following Ruddy's withdrawal with a broken finger. – Sapa-AFP