England v Italy

Thoughts on last night’s match?

Important to remember Hodgson can only manage with what he has available.

I have no issues with the team he selected but I would have played Sterling and Welbeck out wide, Sturridge up front, and Rooney behind Surridge.

Would have put Gerrard just in front of the central defenders.

Reason same in both cases: they have experience and could shield, protect, encourage the less experienced.

We lost for two simple reasons: inexperienced defending and inexperienced finishing.

Also, is unfair to criticise Rooney when you play him out of position.

As for the game is all about context. If you accept we have no chance in this tournament then we are building for the future. As such this crop of inexperienced players will be experienced next time round, so with 8 or 9 experienced (rather than 3 or 4 this time) we will have more players to help the inexperienced.

That is the good news.

The not so good news is I reckon (still) that they will only have two games to get any experience. Uruguay will beat us and put us out, and I suspect Costa Rico will at least get a draw.

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