It is no secret that England are one of football’s biggest underachievers. The Three Lions have not tasted international success since 1966 and have only won six knockout matches at major tournaments since that famous World Cup triumph.
Following their humiliating elimination to Iceland at Euro 2016, which led to the resignation of boss Roy Hodgson, it is clear that a new direction is to be taken. Football Ticket Pad takes a look at what the future could hold for England’s failing stars.
As England trudge home with their tails between their legs, the first thing on the Football Association agenda is appointing a new manager to take them forward in preparation for the 2018 World Cup. Roy Hodgson appeared to be a relatively safe option with the added bonus of him being an English manager which supporters craved. However, four years on and patience has worn thin, do England go overseas in order to claim success?
Plenty of names are in the hat for England’s top job. Sam Allardyce, Gareth Southgate and Harry Redknapp are among the frontrunners, with foreigners such as Jurgen Klinsmann, Guus Hiddink and Laurent Blanc all in with a shout. Following their Euro 2016 capitulation, their is set to be numerous changes on the pitch as well as off it. England face Slovakia in Bratislava on 4th September in their next competitive match and Football Ticket Pad runs through the areas which may see changes:
Joe Hart had a tournament to forget in goal for England and the number one jersey is certainly up for grabs. Jack Butland was unfortunate to miss Euro 2016 through injury and if he starts the season off well at Stoke City, he may have a chance. Fellow English keepers like Ben Foster and Fraser Forster will also be in with a shout if they continue their impressive displays for their respective clubs.
The English defence didn’t really put a foot wrong during Euro 2016 and they appear to have found a settled back four with Kyle Walker, Chris Smalling, Gary Cahill and Danny Rose. However, the likes of Nathaniel Clyne, Ryan Bertrand and Leighton Baines will also look for further involvement in the national side with emerging talents such as Aaron Cresswell vying for a first senior call up.
The fact that England still don’t know their preferred formation is largely down to the fact that the midfield is overrun with options. England looked dangerous in a 4-3-3 system which was used to devastating effect during their unbeaten Euro 2016 qualifying campaign, yet they didn’t use it once in France this summer.
Wayne Rooney appears to have a future as a central midfielder as Dele Alli’s stock rises. However, the future of Jack Wilshere, Jordan Henderson and Ross Barkley is up in the air. New faces like Mark Noble and Danny Drinkwater will certainly press for a place if they continue the new season as they ended it.
The lack of options on the flanks is another glaring void in the England ranks. Raheem Sterling was the only natural winger in the Euro 2016 travelling squad, so will Andros Townsend and Michail Antonio get a shout in a new England system?
England were spoilt for choice in attack this summer and possibly had the most potent attacking force for many years. Harry Kane and Jamie Vardy were the two leading scorers in the Premier League last season and with Daniel Sturridge in their ranks there is not much better strike forces. Danny Welbeck is another option if he can stay fit. However, Marcus Rashford has certainly shown his promise, but whether he will play regularly at Manchester United next season remains to be seen. Jermain Defoe and Andy Carroll are two more English strikers who were unfortunate to miss the plane to France and they may still have England futures under new leadership.