England’s Predicted Starting 11 vs Russia at Euro 2016
It’s an exciting time to be an England fan as we head towards this summer’s major tournament in France – what should England’s starting 11 be?
England begin their quest for Euro 2016 glory on June 11th where they clash with Russia in their opening group game. There are still plenty of friendlies to be played and injuries could hamper Hodgson as he looks for his best 11.
There was a Jekyll and Hyde quality to England in their two previous outings as they superbly saw off Germany but then came undone just days later against the Netherlands.
Debate will no doubt fill the air in pubs and workplaces up and down the country between now and June as to which players should make the squad and who deserves their place in the starting 11. Every person will have a different opinion, but Roy’s is the only one which matters.
England Predicted Starting XI vs Russia at Euro 2016
Who would get a place in England’s best 11 for their opening Euro 2016 match against Russia on Saturday 11th June? We’re opting for a 4-2-2-2 formation.
GK – Fraser Forster – This man has had a superb season in the Southampton goal and deserves his place in the side. By contrast, Joe Hart has probably had one of his most disappointing campaigns. Forster commands the respect of the backline and is capable of pulling off magnificent saves. Southampton have kept plenty of clean sheets this season with him between the sticks and I think he should get his chance this summer.
DEF – Nathaniel Clyne – Kyle Walker will be pushing hard for a start, but Clyne should get the nod. He has boundless energy and often appears to deploy a decent ratio of attack to defence. He is probably slightly quicker when it comes to decision making and that could be crucial particularly if England make it to the latter stages of the competition. Walker could be a Premier League winner by the time the tournament starts, but Clyne can also switch to the left if required. Versatility should give him the nod.
DEF – Danny Rose – The left back position isn’t England’s strongest area unfortunately, but Danny Rose will have a decent connection with many of the 11, after a season working with the likes of Kane, Dier and Alli at Spurs. Yes, he gives away silly fouls occasionally, but if that can be combatted and England can utilise his forward thinking, then he is the best choice. He played both friendlies in March, so Hodgson is obviously a fan. He does get up and down the wing and is a useful asset.
Will Danny Rose start for England at Euro 2016?
DEF – Chris Smalling – Smalling hasn’t had the best of the seasons, but he is a calm head and at least has been playing regularly. He hasn’t always been helped by the rest of his back four at Manchester United this season, but he should be in the England starting 11 against Russia. He has made progress since he was first drafted into the England team and I think he should be a starter. He can be commanding if given the chance and it will boost his confidence if he is selected. That could be reflected in his performance.
DEF – John Stones – I like John Stones, but he’s not had the best season at Everton. He hasn’t been helped by Roberto Martinez’s tactics though and the Spaniards relaxed attitude towards defending. Stones is very assured with the ball at his feet and I think England need that. With Dier just in front, they can link up well. Everton always look flustered at the back and Stones hasn’t been helped by Jagielka losing a yard of pace and Coleman’s inability to close down wingers. Stones might lose concentration occasionally, but on the big stage and if Smalling can keep him alert, he should be the choice ahead of an inconsistent Gary Cahill.
MID – Eric Dier – I think most people agree that Dier should start after a tremendous campaign for Spurs. With England’s weakness largely regarded as their defence, they need someone in front of them to offer protection. Stones always looks better with Barry in front him whilst Cahill often looked assured with Jon Obi-Mikel in the side in the second half of the season. He can also get England moving again from a deep position and his performance in Berlin suggested he is ready for this.
MID – Danny Drinkwater – Although this one will be met with a few reservations, I’d rather have a player who is having the season of his life than a perennially injured player living off a reputation (Wilshire). Drinkwater has been an integral part of the side which at the time of writing is heading for the title. His range of passing has been superb and he can ping a long ball to the feet of the striker. An extra body in front of the back four is no bad thing and he always looks very assured. He performed well in his previous England action and won’t be phased by the opponents.
MID – Deli Alli – This man has to start. He is a prodigious talent who is capable of the unexpected. He has also been playing regularly and is benefitting from the weekly action. He has a trick up his sleeve and is an unknown quantity for many of the teams that England will face. He is still young and raw but has the talent to change a game with a moment of magic and I think Roy Hodgson has to start him.
MID – Ross Barkley – I like an England that will attack and excite fans and Barkley is more likely to do that than James Milner. I think the Liverpool man can be deployed in the squad for experience and know-how and can be brought on to help close games down if required. Barkley is another player that can beat a man and pick a pass and I’d rather see him in the side than Lallana who can be a little inconsistent. He doesn’t appear to have any fear and has been one of the bright spots for Everton this season. I know the side appears to lack experience, but with Dier and Drinkwater holding, it means the likes of Alli and Barkley can maraud forward.
Ross Barkley will be pushing for a start against Russia at Euro 2016.
STR – Harry Kane – Definite starter. There’s no way you can leave the Spurs man out of the squad after the season he has had. He can score from anywhere and always plays with his head up. He has also struck up a relationship with Deli Alli who should be playing just behind him. He’s a man in form and simply cannot be overlooked. I think Roy will start him. His movement alone should get him in the side and his reading of players around him is a big asset.
Watch Harry Kane's goal in England's 3-2 win over Germany.
STR – Jamie Vardy – This is a tough one between Messrs Vardy and Rooney. I’m opting for the latter because I’d rather select a player in form than one who has been off-form and injured. Rooney will offer experience and like Milner, he should be deployed from the bench. Vardy will cause havoc for the opposition defenders and is a relative unknown. His electric pace and finishing will really light up the tournament and after the season he has had, it would unfair to leave him on the bench.
This eleven could change between now and the start of Euro 2016, but I think England need to use players who are in-form and playing week in-week out, they can’t afford to pick players returning from injury or haven’t featured for their clubs this season.
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