England head coach Roy Hodgson and captain Wayne Rooney are expecting a tough test against Scotland at Celtic Park tonight.
The England and Manchester United skipper admits it will be more than a normal friendly between the oldest rivals in international football and believes this experience will benefit the players ahead of the Euro 2016 in France.
“It will be a great test,” Rooney said. “I’ve played here before on big nights in Champions League. The atmosphere will be very loud and very intense. I’ve spoken to a few of the younger players, to make sure they’re ready for the start of the game because if you’re not ready it can take you by surprise, but I’m sure we’ll be ready.”
“We are on a good run at the moment and it is important to keep getting these results.”
“Our next game is in March so we don’t want to come off a bad result. We went to end the year on a high.”
England head coach Roy Hodgson is also relishing the chance to take on their bitter rivals as he looks to maintain his side’s unbeaten start to this season. With goalkeeper Joe Hart rested, Hodgson has to make a choice between ex-Celtic keeper Fraser Forster and West Bromwich Albion’s Ben Foster.
“Everyone is fit,” said Hodgson. “You will have to wait and see what the team will be.”
“The major focus is on Fraser. If I choose Fraser it won’t be for any sentimental Celtic reasons. I think it will be because he deserves a start.”
“I must also add that Ben Foster also deserves a start. They’ve both been doing fantastically well in training. I am sure both would like to play but I am going to disappoint one of them.”
“It’s a very exciting game, a big game,” he continued. “We know we”ll be given a tough test by a Scotland team wanting to win the game and I’m hoping and believing we’ll have the same degree of hope and expectation from our side.”
“The fans here give Celtic and I’m sure Scotland an incredible support. We’ll have to deal with that in terms of not letting it affect us mentally, and we can learn from it possibly. For some of our younger players, they won’t have experienced that type of game before.”
Probable Line-up (4-4-2): Fraser Forster(Gk); Nathaniel Clyne, Gary Cahill, Phil Jagielka, Luke Shaw; Jack Wilshere, James Milner, Alex-Oxlade Chamberlain, Ross Barkley; Danny Welbeck, Wayne Rooney