A Singapore press holdings portal

Sports

Ian Macintosh
Sunday, Jun 1, 2014

Sports

World Cup: Scholes' spot on

The New Paper | Ian Macintosh | Sunday, Jun 1, 2014

Former Manchester United midfielder Paul Scholes at an exclusive meet-and-greet session held at Courts Megastore in Tampines on 22 March 2014.

Paul Scholes wants England to play "the Liverpool way" in Brazil and you won't get much argument from the supporters.

Speaking on his Paddy Power blog this week, the former Manchester United midfielder urged Roy Hodgson to go all out and attack this summer.

"It would be refreshing for England to adopt Liverpool's attacking mentality in Brazil," he said.

"Really go for it. That means certainly four, and possibly five, Liverpool players in the starting line-up."

Scholes wants to see the England team powered by Steven Gerrard and Jordan Henderson, with pace from Raheem Sterling and potency from Daniel Sturridge.

Glen Johnson, he believes, could also add something at right back, though Phil Jones may challenge him for his place.

Scholes, like most England supporters, does not expect the Three Lions to be among the favourites this summer.

If that's the case, why not attempt to go out with a bit of glory?

The fans, and history, are always kinder to the braver team.

LAME EXIT

Compare and contrast the reputation of Sven-Goran Eriksson's staid, dull 2006 quarter-final side with the creative and inventive Glenn Hoddle team, dismissed in dubious circumstances in the first knock-out round in 1998.

Hoddle's men went out earlier, but at least they did so in style.

There was sympathy for Hodgson at Euro 2012 when he deployed his team in tight, organised banks of four, seeking to avoid defeat before trying to win.

The former Fulham boss had taken control of the team only shortly before the tournament and had hardly any time to work with the players.

It was hardly surprising that he would seek to play it safe. But there is no excuse for that this year.

Drawn in Group D with Italy, Uruguay and Costa Rica, you can see why there would be those who believe defence to be the best form of survival, never mind of attack. England are low on belief and fearful of humiliation.

Scholes, you would certainly hope, is not advocating the kind of giddy, reckless attacking that saw Liverpool shed a three-goal lead at Selhurst Park towards the end of the season.

But there is no reason why Hodgson can't use the few strengths that England have at their disposal.

There is genuine pace is this team, from Sterling on one flank and, in all likelihood, from Sturridge on the other.

BE BRAVE

Why not unleash it on the world rather than sheltering behind those banks of four?

Frank Lampard will be 36 by the end of the World Cup and he has had countless opportunities to translate his club form to international level.

Why not send Henderson, the creative engine room of Anfield, out in his place?

No comments yet.
Be the first to post comment.