Chelsea defender and England international, Ashley Cole, has been ruled out of the next two World Cup qualifier matches for England against Montenegro and Poland.
England have two crucial World Cup qualifying matches coming up within the next week and could do with all their star players.
They play Montenegro on Friday, 11th October and meet Poland 15th October.
They are currently leading the group with 16 points but only just.
Second placed Ukraine has 15 points while England’s next opponents, Montenegro, have 15 points also. Third placed Poland have thirteen points.
If England wants to secure a smooth passage to next year’s World Cup in Brazil they cannot afford to drop any points in any of the two matches coming up.
Ashley Cole has been replaced by Kieran Gibbs, who plays for Arsenal in the left back position. Cole’s original position in the team will be filled by Leighton Baines.
The problem with his rib was made worse for Cole after he aggravated the injury against Norwich City on Sunday and had to be substituted. He went for a scan on the problem and the decision was taken that it was advisable not to risk the player given what is at stake in the two games, beginning with Montenegro on Friday and Poland four days later.
The England squad met at St George’s Park on Monday and will train again this morning, this time in front of television cameras. Hodgson has no other injury worries and the absentee list of first-team players – Cole, Glen Johnson and Theo Walcott – is not as bad as it has been in the past for England managers.