ADAM Johnson’s testing start to his Sunderland career saw him pay the price on the international stage yesterday after he was snubbed by England boss Roy Hodgson.
Johnson had been included in every England squad since the summer’s European Championships, albeit he was forced to pull out of September’s World Cup qualifiers with a thigh injury.
But the Easington-born winger has struggled in Sunderland’s goal-shy attack since his £10m move from Manchester City, and that has not gone unnoticed by Hodgson.
Johnson was left out of the 23-man squad for next Wednesday’s friendly in Sweden, with teenage Liverpool wideman Raheem Sterling preferred to the 25-year-old.
Sunderland are represented in the England squads further down the age groups though.
Striker Connor Wickham is included in the Under-21s squad for Tuesday night’s friendly against Northern Ireland at Blackpool’s Bloomfield Road.
Sunderland team-mate Danny Rose has not been named by Stuart Pearce, with the Under-21 boss keen to take a closer look at Chelsea’s Nat Chalobah, currently on loan at Watford.
But Black Cats keeper Jordan Pickford has received an international call-up after being selected by the Under-19s for Tuesday’s friendly against Finland.
ENGLAND SQUAD: Forster (Celtic), Hart (Manchester City), Ruddy (Norwich City), Baines (Everton), Bertrand (Chelsea), Cahill (Chelsea), Caulker (Tottenham Hotspur), Jagielka (Everton), Johnson (Liverpool), Shawcross (Stoke City), Walker (Tottenham Hotspur), Cleverley (Manchester United), Gerrard (Liverpool), Lennon (Tottenham Hotspur), Osman (Everton), Shelvey (Liverpool), Sterling (Liverpool), Walcott (Arsenal), Wilshere (Arsenal), Young (Manchester United), Rooney (Manchester United), Sturridge (Chelsea), Welbeck (Manchester United).