Lampard misses England qualifier vs. San Marino


LONDON (AP) -Frank Lampard will miss England's World Cup qualifier against San Marino on Friday after failing to shrug off a knee injury, depriving him of the captain's armband for the match.

However, the Football Association said Thursday that the Chelsea midfielder could return for Tuesday's Group H match in Poland, the much tougher of the two games.

Lampard, who limped off midway through the second half of Chelsea's 4-1 win over Norwich in the Premier League on Saturday, was expected to take the armband in the absence of the suspended Steven Gerrard.

Striker Wayne Rooney has been handed the captaincy for the sellout match at Wembley Stadium.

"Frank Lampard has returned to his club for further treatment and will not be available for England's World Cup qualifier with San Marino," an FA statement said. "The Chelsea midfielder will return to the England squad on Sunday for assessment."

The FA also said Thursday that Ryan Bertrand - a late call-up to the squad in place of the injured Kieran Gibbs - is unavailable for the San Marino match because of illness.

Bertrand wasn't expected to start Friday, with Ashley Cole and Leighton Baines ahead of him in the pecking order.

With Lampard and Gerrard out, Rooney could now operate in a deeper role in midfield - where he has played with great effect for Manchester United in recent games.

England is level on four points with Poland and Montenegro after two group games.

Copyright 2016 by STATS LLC and The Associated Press. Any commercial use or distribution without the express written consent of STATS LLC and The Associated Press is strictly prohibited.

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