Paul Parker

England have been an embarrassment – and Roy Hodgson must quit

Paul Parker

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England's performance at these World Cup finals has been an utter embarrassment. I was planning to fly up for the last group match against Costa Rica on Tuesday.

I'm on a business trip out here doing some work, and we were all set to fly to Belo Horizonte, but it is just a waste of time. Who is really wanting to see what England can offer in a match that is meaningless?


Their time to do something meaningful has come and gone at this tournament. That's how I feel about Roy Hodgson too. He has had his time. We need a new manager in who is going to inject some dynamism into the squad, who can be trusted to bring the youngsters on. I don't think Roy is the man to do it for England moving forward. This tournament has not been kind to his, or his team's capabilities.

When you sit and watch Costa Rica outplay an Italy side who have nothing going forward, you realise just how bad England's result was last Saturday in losing 2-1. This Italian side struggle to create anything when you apply some pressure. You have to ask yourself why England were not applying any pressure last weekend?

This is the quickest end to a tournament in England's history. It is a complete farce.


We have to move in another direction after what has gone on here. A few players have to be cut out of the picture for good. I'm not sure Roy is the bloke to get the job done.

England should be all about younger players, and bringing three or four players through from the Under-21 squad so there is some continuity put in place moving forward.

There are around six European teams who have players playing together from the youth ranks right through to the senior squad. It is the only way to go for us after this fiasco.


The Italian manager Cesare Prandelli will fall on his sword if the Azzurri go out against Uruguay on Tuesday. He won't wait to be told he has to go, he will know himself that it would not be good enough for an Italian side not to reach the knockout stage.

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Hodgson and England have failed and it sends out a negative message by telling everybody he is staying on.

And you have to question the FA chairman Greg Dyke and his wisdom when he comes out on Friday afternoon to tell us Roy will be staying until 2016 when we have failed so badly.

Dyke thinks that is a positive thing to say, but surely there has to be serious discussions about how England have performed at these finals. It has not been good enough.

I've played with an England squad who reached the last four of a World Cup finals. That is what should be expected of our squad.

Everyone is saying we looked better at these finals. We did look better, but we only looked better when we were behind. We have lost two games, and we are out. It is all about results. There should be no excuses.

We got ourselves back in the game against Uruguay due to substitutions. Roy started with the same team against Uruguay that we trotted out against Italy which I thought was wrong.

We decided we would go to try to win the game after getting back into it, and we left ourselves sparse at the back. We should have taken a point. and given ourselves a chance to progress in our final match.

Instead, we tried to chase a win. A draw was not great, but it would have kept us in the competition.

We blew it by going gung-ho when we needed someone to put their foot on the ball. But we weren't helped by going into a major tournament with a poor, poor defence for the first time in 20 years.

We have two quite inexperienced central defenders, and two full-backs who can't defend properly. Leighton Baines is not a good one-on-one defender, and doesn't have great pace in trying to defend.

Gary Cahill allowed Luis Suarez to shoot rather than trying to block before the winner went in. He thought that Suarez was going to check inside before he shot. It left Joe Hart with no chance.

There was a chance for guys like young Ross Barkley to start last night's match, but Roy instead stuck with Danny Welbeck, who can't cross the ball when he runs with it to by-line.

Young Barkley is a bit like Paul Gascoigne in the way he runs at players. He was criminally underused as was Adam Lallana. We had the attacking flair in the squad, but we didn't tap into it.

That comes down to the manager. Barkley was the guy in the squad who could have illuminated these matches for England, but we have a coach who just sits there and you don't know if he is playing chess matches in his head.

It is not motivational to see a coach just sitting there on the bench. Especially when we have been chasing games, and not winning. Bad sides can look better when they are losing. The players don't want to see Ray Lewington and Gary Neville getting to their feet to try to offer encouragement.

They want to see the manager so they can react to the moment. The manager is the man who drives them on. Why can't we take a game to a team from the kick-off against the really top sides?

We must have a rethink about where we are going. I'd like to see younger coach brought through from within the coaching structure to manage the national team. But that needs to happen if we are also going to bring the kids through with him.

In every respect, this has not been good enough for an England squad.

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