From the back pages, March 22: I’d never turn my back on England like Ferdinand, says Gerrard as boss Hodgson admits he may have been naive in dealing with Rio

England's Steven Gerrard

England's Steven Gerrard

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Steven Gerrard claimed he could never turn his back on his country after Rio Ferdinand’s remarkable snub before England’s World Cup qualifier against San Marino. (Daily Mail)

Roy Hodgson insists he has no regrets at having selected Rio Ferdinand in his initial squad for England’s World Cup qualifiers against San Marino and Montenegro. But, with the defender now working as a television pundit in Qatar for Friday’s game, the national manager will address whether the veteran still has a future at this level after the forthcoming double-header. (The Guardian)

Alastair Cook’s decision to bowl first backfires badly as Peter Fulton makes England’s bowlers suffer with maiden Test hundred. (The Telegraph)

Michael Owen has revealed he has never been 100 per cent fit since he was 19. The ex-England striker, 33, who retires in June, said: “My hamstring gave way in a game at Leeds at the age of 19 and, from that moment on, my playing career was compromised. (The Sun)

The FA board yesterday indicated that they are ready for dynamic change by agreeing unanimously that former director general of the BBC, Greg Dyke, should be their new chairman. (The Express)

Gus Poyet has turned down the Reading job after a day of drama and negotiations with the Premier League strugglers. Brighton manager Poyet had a meeting with Royals bigwigs on Wednesday and asked for 24 hours to think about the move. (The Mirror)

The Manchester City chief executive, Ferran Soriano, has made his first public comment on the work of manager Roberto Mancini, declaring that he is “a champion” and that “it is not easy to win back any league, especially the Premier League”. (The Independent)

Mark Cavendish wants to compete in the team pursuit for Great Britain at the 2016 Olympic Games and says that he “completely disagrees” with demands that he make a two-year commitment to the track. (The Times)