Hodgson: No reservations over Carroll
Carroll, who transferred from Newcastle to Liverpool for £35 million, squeezed into Hodgson's 23-man squad ahead of Peter Crouch after a series of good performances towards the end of the season.
Carroll's pedigree has never been in doubt. The striker's hulking frame allows him to shrug off challenges from the strongest defenders in the world and he was prolific during his time at Newcastle.
With Wayne Rooney suspended for England's first two matches of the UEFA EURO 2012, Hodgson may choose Carroll to lead the line for the Three Lions at the tournament and the England coach had no qualms about including the player after a chat with former Liverpool manager Kenny Dalglish.
"I spoke to Kenny about him as I don't know [Carroll] well and it's easy to be tricked by perceptions of players, about what you hear and read about them, but Kenny was convinced about his ability and his personality," Hodgson said. "He was convinced about his seriousness as a professional. When I heard that it meant I had no further reservations.
"He is a very different player to what else we have in the squad. He can hold the ball up and has the ability to make the runs behind defenders and use his strength and power."
Hodgson chose Carroll, Rooney, Jermain Defoe and Danny Welbeck as his strikers for the tournament in Poland and Ukraine.
Norwich goalkeeper John Ruddy and Arsenal's teenage starlet Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain were surprising inclusions, while there was no place for Michael Carrick, Micah Richards and Rio Ferdinand, who was left out instead of John Terry.
Gerrard named captain
Hodgson did not include Paul Scholes despite a clamour for the 38-year-old Manchester United veteran to be included. The naming of Steven Gerrard as England captain was expected, with Hodgson having seen the midfielder's leadership at close quarters during his time in charge at Liverpool.
The 64-year-old hopes Gerrard can instil a sense of unity. "I will be counting on him to help me as much as he can, to build the team unity, and build the type of environment to give us a chance to thrive at this tournament," Hodgson said of Gerrard. "He merits this distinction. I know him as a person, a player, I know how committed he is to England."
Hodgson has been criticised for including Liverpool winger Stewart Downing, but his selection of Oxlade-Chamberlain has been widely praised. The 18-year-old has started just six Premier League games since his £15 million move to Arsenal, but has excelled towards the end of the season and offers pace and strength on either flank or through the middle of midfield.
"He is a very exciting player," Hodgson said. "He has given one or two appearances that made a big impression on me, not least when Arsenal played Milan at the Emirates. He can play wide or central. For the future he is one we will see a lot of if he continues as he has started."
England today revised their plans for the build-up to next month's tournament. The Three Lions will now meet up in Manchester on Wednesday evening before flying to Norway on Friday for their friendly in Oslo, rather than attending a training camp in Spain, which has now been scrapped.
Seven days after that, England face Belgium at Wembley, although Ruddy will be missing, having been given special dispensation to leave the squad by Hodgson as he will get married on 2 June.