Hodgson hits back at Lineker’s England criticism

England manager Roy Hodgson has responded to criticism of his tactics from former national team striker Gary Lineker, who described the Three Lions’ approach against the Republic of Ireland as “back to the dark ages” and predicted Hodgson’s team would be thrashed if they approached their friendly with Brazil in the same way, BBC Sport has reported.

Hodgson dismissed Lineker’s complaints, insisting that England were moving forward under his guidance and comparing the approach he was looking for against Ireland to how Champions League finalists Borussia Dortmund line up, adding that England have used that system regularly since he became manager.

When asked if he felt England were well placed to qualify for next year’s World Cup – to be held in Brazil – Hodgson replied: “We will wait and see. But you’re asking me the question, do I believe, from what we saw against Ireland, that we are on the right track – and the answer is ‘yes’.

What is the dark ages? Basically I suppose we were playing the two front players and asking at least one of those front players, when we lose the ball, to make certain he drops down and helps out in midfield,” Hodgson continued.

The former Fulham, Liverpool and West Brom boss added: “I’m just talking 4-4-2s, actually. I’m not comparing us to any team. I don’t think we play like Borussia Dortmund. I think we play like England. We play up to the principles that we work on in the training sessions.

England are currently second in World Cup qualification group H, two points behind Montenegro and four points ahead of Poland and Ukraine, who each have a game in hand.

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