Redknapp defends England

PA Sport
Harry Redknapp (right) has defended Roy Hodgson's England

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Harry Redknapp (right) has defended Roy Hodgson's England

Harry Redknapp has hit back at criticism of Roy Hodgson's England for their efforts at Euro 2012, but accepts the national team must raise their game if they are to make progress.

The Three Lions were eliminated at the quarter-final stage once again when they lost on penalties to Italy on Sunday night. However, just to have made the latter stages of the competition was an achievement in itself, with Hodgson having only recently taken on the job following Fabio Capello's resignation.

Former Tottenham manager Redknapp, who at one stage had looked set for the England job, told Absolute Radio: "It is unbelievable. We keep underestimating our players. I don't care what anybody says, we have got good players."

He added: "Our back four and the goalkeeper will be as good as any back four and goalkeeper in the tournament, man for man. You know, Glen Johnson, Ashley Cole, Joe Hart in goal, John Terry. Joleon Lescott had an excellent tournament.

"You've got Steven Gerrard, you had Scott Parker, you've got Wayne Rooney coming back.

"No-one's blaming Roy or anyone else, that's for sure. I mean he's just took over, he's going to have to get his own style of play, but we've got to start playing some football haven't we?"

Redknapp, however, conceded England need to improve some aspects of their game, having faded badly in the second half against the Italians when they were chasing possession for large spells.

"We can't keep giving the ball away in international football and expect to win games," said Redknapp.

"I mean our possession was less than any team in the tournament I think, apart from the Irish. That can't be right. It's not as if we can't pass the ball."

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