With the recent European 2016 qualifiers well and truly underway, you’d imagine thoughts from this summer’s World Cup have been diminished to the back of people’s minds?
With success comes praise, and with failure comes criticism. England unfortunately had a poor competition by anyone’s standards in Brazil. Questions were asked as to why the Three Lions didn’t reach the knock-out stages, with a case of redevelopment needed within the national side.
Stalwarts Steven Gerrard and Frank Lampard announced their retirement from the team, allowing for a fresh faced England set up to be formed.
Youngsters such as Calum Chambers, John Stones and Fabian Delph have found themselves to be called upon much more in recent months. Following his reported £16 million move from Southampton to Arsenal, Chambers has made the right-back position his own, with numbers dwindling as to who could fill that role.
Glen Johnson, Kyle Walker and Nathaniel Clyne are all possibilities to play in that position, but with inspiration coming from countries such as Spain and Germany, youth in the national side appears to be the way forward for England.
However, with these youthful players finding it hard to break into their club’s first team, a number of experienced personnel could be the key to balancing the logistics. They say with age comes wisdom, and with Wayne Rooney labelled the ‘father of the team’ at the age of just 28, perhaps a figure such as Italy’s Andrea Pirlo would be better suited to that title.
Every country needs a ‘Pirlo’. With a vast amount of knowledge to his game, Roy Hodgson’s men could learn a lot from having someone similar in their ranks, not only to help out in the present, but to also engage with the younger generation for the future.
Could the answer by lying with past hero’s Stevie or Frank?