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Linekar Claims That Hodgson Was To Blame

Former England international Gary Lineker has claimed that Roy Hodgson was responsible for England’s early exit from the World Cup 2014. England suffered the embarrassing group stage exit for the first time since 1958, as they came out of the World Cup after two defeats in the opening matches. The defeats against Uruguay and Italy proved catastrophic for the team, while they could only manage a 0-0 draw with Costa Rica in the final group match. As a result, England players have returned from the tournament much earlier than expected.

Even the expectations were low heading into the tournament, England were at least expected to reach the last 16 of the tournament. They were in a tough group containing two previous World Cup champions, but that was not an explanation for the exit. Lineker says that Hodgson should take responsibility for the exit since he made several tactical errors during the course of the tournament. Liverpool midfielder Steven Gerrard was deployed as the defensive midfielder, but the 34-year-old was at fault for some of the goals scored by the opposition.

Gerrard has always been an attacking midfielder and it was only in the last few months that he has been playing in a defensive midfield role. His lack of experience was exposed on several occasions by the opposition, as Gerrard failed to spot the danger.

“Personally, I think Roy got it wrong. The system that suits this kind of England better, with the lack of experience in it, is probably a 4-3-3. He tried to just play with two players in the centre of midfield. In the first game I thought it was better because he had Sterling behind Sturridge, and that gave us three because Sterling is more of a natural midfield player certainly than Rooney. But I just think it is too big an ask for just two central midfield players and once again we were outnumbered,” said Lineker.