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Injured Carroll ruled out of England friendlies

The 24-year-old has been struggling with a heel injury after he was named in Roy Hodgson's squad to face Ireland at Wembley on May 29 and for the prestigious game in Brazil on June 2 at the newly-refurbished Maracana stadium in Rio de Janeiro.

The Liverpool striker spent last season on loan at Premier League rivals West Ham United and British media reports on Tuesday said the clubs had agreed a deal for him to join the London club permanently for 15 million pounds.

Carroll joins Liverpool captain Steven Gerrard and Arsenal's Jack Wilshere in missing the two matches which are warmups for September's World Cup qualifiers against Moldova and Ukraine. The FA said nobody would be called up as a replacement.

England's striking options are Manchester United's Wayne Rooney and Danny Welbeck plus Liverpool's Daniel Sturridge and Tottenham Hotspur's Jermain Defoe for the two matches.