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We know seven of the England team Roy Hodgson will select for the opening 2014 World Cup final tie against Italy. Two others are virtually certain. It is the Manaus Two that have kept the media guessing, looking for the tiniest of tips that would complete England’s starting XI.

Hodgson has been dropping hints and red herrings in equal proportions, keeping his cards super-glued to his chest because the line-up will also reveal his tactics for England’s Italian job, and like his opposite number, Cesare Prandelli, he will give less than nothing away, if that were possible.

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