Carroll named in England squad

West Ham United striker Andy Carroll has been named in Roy Hodgson's senior England squad for friendly internationals with Republic of Ireland and Brazil.

The Hammers No8 has been rewarded for his outstanding recent form by being called-up for the matches, which will take place at Wembley on Wednesday 29 May and in Rio on Sunday 2 June respectively.

Carroll, who has bagged seven goals for West Ham this season, has been capped nine times previously, scoring twice. The 24-year-old, whose last cap came in the 5-0 FIFA World Cup qualifying win over San Marino at Wembley in October 2012, netted famously in England's 3-2 group-stage win over Sweden at EURO 2012.

Hodgson explained his decision to call-up the on-loan Liverpool man, saying: "In a squad of players, you need various qualities. It is important to have players who give you different dimensions.

"Games pan out in different ways. Since Andy has come back from injury he has been in our thoughts and he gives another dimension to our squad.

"He gives us other possibilities. There is always room for a centre-forward of his class. He is particularly good at attacking crosses, not only in the opposition penalty box but our own penalty box."

The forward will come up against Hodgson's latest call-up, in-form goalkeeper Alex McCarthy, when West Ham take on Reading in their final Barclays Premier League fixture of 2012/13 at the Boleyn Ground on Sunday.

Tickets for the visit of Republic of Ireland to Wembley on Wednesday 29 May at 8pm are available here.

England Squad

Ben Foster, Joe Hart, Alex McCarthy

Leighton Baines, Gary Cahill, Ashley Cole, Phil Jagielka, Glen Johnson, Phil Jones, Joleon Lescott, Kyle Walker

Michael Carrick, Tom Cleverley, Frank Lampard, James Milner, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, Theo Walcott

Andy Carroll, Jermain Defoe, Wayne Rooney, Daniel Sturridge, Danny Welbeck