Manchester United striker Marcus Rashford has thrust himself in contention for a place in England's 23-man squad for the European Championships after becoming the young ever Three Lions player to score on his debut against Australia. The 18-year-old netted with his second touch at the Stadium of Light to give Hodgson a selection dilemma, with Daniel Sturridge currently sidelined with a calf problem.
Rashford scored eight goals for United last season after making his senior debut in February, but was selected in Hodgson's provisional 26-man party to gain further first team experience and deputise if another player got injured. Hodgson now appears willing to select Sturridge even if he does not prove his fitness before the 31 May deadline, though Rashford could yet be selected on his own merit.
"I thought he did well," the England boss told reporters. "I was asked the question on TV before the game, 'was I nervous about putting him in and was I nervous that he wouldn't be able to handle the situation?' The answer was that I wasn't that nervous and I wasn't that surprised by the way he played.
"We had a further advantage with him that in changing our system back from a diamond to having thee forwards, it gave us a chance of seeing if he would be capable of playing in those wider positions. He tired towards the end, he was obviously feeling the intensity and the pace of the game and we expected that.
"I am pleased for him and of course he was always one of the players who was seriously competing for a place in the 23. He's done his chances of travelling with us no harm but nothing changes in that respect, because we wouldn't have had us in the 26 if we didn't think he was a contender to be one of the 23."
Sturridge has not trained for the past two days and did not feature in the squad for the win over Australia, though is expected to re-join the squad over the weekend. Hodgson admits he is prepared to retain the Liverpool forward even with a fitness concern hanging over him
"If it turns out that his injury would keep him out of the Euros and he would unfit when we played Russia in Marseille, that might make a difference," Hodgson, who confirmed defender Chris Smalling went off in the second half due to cramp, added. "But I have no indication at the moment that the seriousness of his injury is such that it is putting his chance of playing in France in jeopardy at all. Daniel Sturridge is a very good quality player, we know him very well and he is in the mix with everyone else."