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Chelsea, Everton, Liverpool, Man City, Man Utd & Spurs aces in England XI for Poland clash

18:52 16 October 2012

Jermain Defoe (left) and Ashley Cole are set to return to the England side to face Poland. Photo credit; Mike Egerton/EMPICS

Jermain Defoe (left) and Ashley Cole are set to return to the England side to face Poland. Photo credit; Mike Egerton/EMPICS

EMPICS Sport

Line Ups: Poland v England

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

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.

Ultimately those players were unable to get onto the field today, with the match replayed until 4pm tomorrow UK time.

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