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Hansen urges Hodgson to cap Forster

ESPN staff
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Fraser Forster needs to experience international football to truly serve as Joe Hart's deputy, says Hansen © PA Photos
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Alan Hansen has urged England manager Roy Hodgson to give Celtic's Fraser Forster his first taste of international football after Joe Hart's exclusion from Manchester City's starting line-up.

Writing for the Telegraph, the former Liverpool and Scotland international believes Forster represents the only option for England at the World Cup should Hart's loss of form lead to an extended spell on the sidelines at the Etihad.

While the former Newcastle United trainee has not played in the Premier League, Hansen believes Forster's European experience with Celtic will stand him in good stead - but with only a handful of matches remaining before England fly out to Brazil, starting with Chile and Germany this month, time is tight to introduce the keeper to the England set-up.

"Forster has to start for England in at least one of the friendlies later this month, without a shadow of a doubt," Hansen wrote.

"If you are being brutally honest, Roy does not have any genuine alternatives."

With Paul Ruddy's form waning for Norwich, who lost 7-0 to Manchester City at the weekend, Hansen believes Hodgson must act sooner rather than later to introduce Forster to international football.

"Forster had a fantastic game for Celtic against Barcelona in the Champions League last season, but we have not seen him on the biggest stage," Hansen continued.

"It is not just about the quality of opposition, that will not be better than Barcelona, it is the other aspects of being picked for your country.

"In terms of making the step up from club to international football, goalkeeper is the hardest position of all. It is hard anyway, but this is a huge step up.

"You have to come into it and get to know the back four, so they have got to give Fraser a game just in case Joe is out long term at City."

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