In case you had missed it, England are contesting a friendly against Norway at Wembley and with recently appointed skipper Wayne Rooney eagerly suggesting these were exciting times for the Three Lions in his pre-match preamble, we’d love to see those claims justified.
Despite picking up just a single point in Brazil, England are still the clear 1/2 favourites with Ladbrokes to grab a win over their Scandinavian counterparts.
Here are three things which we’d implore Roy Hodgson to do to help the latest ‘new dawn’ turn out to be a true one after an apocalyptic performance at the World Cup:
Raheem Sterling to be deployed as number 10 in a diamond
Liverpool’s pocket-sized dynamo is rapidly turning into one of the most frightening attacking forces in World football and if he’s to wreak similar havoc for his country, Hodgson ought to play him as a number 10.
It’s no coincidence that the Reds won seven out of eight matches in which Sterling played in the hole last season, while his most recent display against Spurs summed up the debate in a nut-shell.
The teenager not only scored but terrorised Tottenham all game from the tip of a diamond, where he’s so hard to pick up – while England can then deploy Daniel Sturridge and Wayne Rooney as the natural two up front.
Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain playing centrally
The varying deployment of Arsenal’s midfielder has led to somewhat of a nomadic existence for the Ox at the Emirates, though his best performance in a Gunners shirt to date came in a mesmerising showing at Bayern Munich last season in the centre of the park.
England should harness his athleticism and dribbling ability alongside the likes of Jordan Henderson and let him off the leash in the middle.
Phil Jones and Gary Cahill form a solid partnership
If the World Cup was good for anything at least it rooted out several weak spots and unfortunately for Phil Jagielka the Everton man’s limitations were exposed in Brazil.
On the flip side, Chelsea’s Gary Cahill is growing into the consummate centre-back and if Phil Jones can finally realise that potential Sir Alex Ferguson used to harp on about England will benefit hugely.
All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing.
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