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Monday, 6 June 2016

Euro 2016, Hodgson's tournament ?

Roy has been in charge for 2 major tournaments already and hasn't had the best of luck in either of them. He managed to make the quarter finals in 2012, but failed to get out of the group stage in Rio in 2014, so is this his tournament? or could Euro 2016 be Hodgson's last major tournament.

There's no doubt the FA back him, but in recent times England managers haven't been given so long to make their mark on the England squad, particularly when results haven't always gone England's way. Clearly it would be stupid to sit and slate the manager days before England's opening game, so I'm going to take a look at the positives of Roy Hodgsons reign at England.

1. Trusting in youth

Clearly one positive of Roy's time in charge of England is his ability to believe in younger players and give them opportunities. Evident most recently by his choice to take Marcus Rashford to Paris this summer over perhaps more experienced options. Looking at the England side in general it is evident that younger players are being more trusted. Players like Dele Alli who has shone this season, in his breakthrough season at Tottenham, and straight away is a contender for being in England's starting line up on Saturday night, John stones even who is becoming more experienced but is still young and still has much to learn at the heart of defence. Roy cant be criticised for this, it's a great thing to have a balance of experience and youth, younger players often play with less fear and the more experienced players can guide them and support them, a balance is key, and Roy appreciates that.

2. His qualifying record

Euro 2016 qualifiers went incredibly well for England and Hodgson, winning all 10 games, conceding only 3 goals in those  games and scoring 30. This clearly shows that the current squad mean business, and that Roy is looking to show any doubters what he is capable of as a manager. Despite England's qualifying group not being the toughest test, being unbeaten is clearly a magnificent confidence boost for the squad.

3. Nothing to lose

Hodgson has proven his quality within these last qualifiers and really has nothing to lose. whatever happens he has set the England side up for a bright future, with such talent breaking through into the first team, after successful Premier League seasons. Only time will tell how well we do, and how Hodgson is viewed for what happens, but I strongly believe he is capable to push on in this tournament, and compete and be serious contenders for winning. It is vital however that the squad hit the ground running, getting a strong start against Russia and Saturday night will help him tremendously.

Overall, Hodgson could mark his name in the history books if his squad triumph in France later this month, but even if he doesn't he cant be too harshly criticised, England have got to the tournament in fine fashion and if that's anything to go by, England fans should be looking forward to the competition getting started.

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