Hodgson hopes Jones visit can inspire England squad

Date published: Saturday 21st May 2016 1:59

Eddie Jones and Roy Hodgson: Met at St George's Park

Roy Hodgson hopes Grand Slam-winning England rugby coach Eddie Jones’ visit to St. George’s Park has inspired his players ahead of Euro 2016. 

The Rugby Football Union appointed the Australian as its first ever overseas head coach in November following the humiliating pool-stage exit at the home World Cup.

Jones quickly revived England’s fortunes, and two months ago led the country to their first Six Nations Grand Slam since 2003.

Jones was given a tour of St George’s Park by Hodgson on Friday and joined him for training, where the pair spent the session deep in conversation together.

“It is someone who I have met a couple of times previously, and when we’ve met we’ve discussed the possibility of coming to see each other,” Hodgson said of Jones. “At some time him at St George’s and me at Pennyhill Park.

“But, of course, I am rather hoping some of his magic dust that he had in winning the Grand Slam will rub off. That wouldn’t be harmful in any way.

“It is always good I think as coach to take some ideas or thoughts or to pick the brains of other successful managers in other disciplines because, of course, the job, if you like, of managing and coaching elite players has a lot of similarities.”

Hodgson is this summer looking to repeat what Jones has managed in his short time at the helm by turning misfortune into triumph.

The Three Lions’ crashed out of the World Cup in the group stage two years ago, but the current fresh, new squad will be heading to France looking to make amends.

Turkey are the opponents in England’s first pre-Euro 2016 preparation friendly on Sunday, when Gary Cahill will captain the side with Wayne Rooney unavailable at the Etihad Stadium.

Hodgson revealed the reason he chose a provisional 26-man squad was so midfielders Jack Wilshere and Jordan Henderson, who are both returning from injury, have a chance to prove their fitness ahead of Euro 2016 next month.

“Jordan alongside Jack, I suppose, are the reasons why we’ve extended this time our squad from the usual 23 to 26,” Hodgson said.

“We do need to assess them, we do need to be sure that if we’re going to select them they will be the Jordan Henderson, the Jack Wilshere that we know – not players who are unfortunately recovering to be that player again.”

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