Friday, 31 May 2013


ABOVE: Roy Hodgson has slammed Gary Lineker’s Twitter outburst
I am stuck in my belief that it’s football players who win matches
Roy Hodgson
31st May 2013

By David Woods

ROY HODGSON has hit back at Gary Lineker's claim that his England tactics are outdated.

Ex-Three Lions skipper and TV pundit Lineker blasted Hodgson’s 4-4-2 approach in the 1-1 draw with the Republic of Ireland on Wednesday night.

He said on Twitter: “Don’t like England playing this system. So easy to play against. Brazil will thrash us if we
line up the same way. Predictable and dated.

“Even though results haven’t been great, felt tactically England were maturing, but this is a step back to.. dark ages of 2 lines of 4.”

But boss Hodgson claimed a much-praised Borussia Dortmund adopt a similar system.

He said: “Do I believe, from what we saw against Ireland, that we are on the right track? The answer is ‘yes’. I’m never surprised by what’s said. Other people will have other opinions.

“I am stuck in my belief that it’s football players who win matches and you need to get your best players on the field in positions that suit them.”

Hodgson had been expected to go for 4-2-3-1 at Wembley, but Rooney started up front alongside Sturridge.

“We were asking at least one of those front players, when we lose the ball, to make certain he drops down and helps out in midfield,” said Hodgson.

“Borussia Dortmund, in the games they played, adopted a very similar way of playing to the one we tried to play.

“I don’t know that our system has changed that much. Our attacking play, especially in the second half, was quite good. All that was missing was the icing on the cake of a second goal.”

Sunday’s friendly against Brazil was last night thrown into doubt.

A local judge ruled that Rio’s Maracana Stadium venue is unsafe and the match must be suspended.

It was not immediately clear whether remedial work could be completed in time or if the match would be switched to a new venue.