Wembley Stadium

Next Game

England v Norway

Wednesday, 03 September 2014, 20:00

International Match

Last Game

Costa Rica 0 - 0 England

Tuesday, 24 June 2014, 17:00

World Cup Group D

Bernstein: Seniors priority

Football Association chairman David Bernstein says the senior England squad has to be the priority, despite impacting on the U21 set-up.

Last Updated: 10/06/13 at 07:01 Post Comment

Stuart Pearce saw his Young Lions tumble out of this summer's European Championship on Saturday after suffering back-to-back defeats against Italy and Norway.

He has had his hands tied by limitations on his squad selection, with the opportunity to call on experienced performers who are now part of national coach Roy Hodgson's plans denied him.

Bernstein understands Pearce's frustration, but insists the FA do all they can to make the playing field as level as possible.

He told Sky Sports News HD: "We believe we do everything we can and we put every effort in to helping all of our managers with their squads, trying to get the best possible squads out for various competitions.

"We have a lot of competitions at the moment with the U21s and the U20s. And of course at the same time, which probably complicated matters, we had two important England friendlies - in particular the Brazil match.

"Although it was only a friendly game, it was a very important preparatory match for the World Cup. Roy Hodgson took it extremely seriously, we all did, and I know he came away having learned a lot about Rio de Janeiro, the climate, the Marcana Stadium, and the whole Brazil thing, which is very special.

"Remember England hadn't played there for 30 years and I think some of the younger players who could have been here that he had there - and (Alex) Oxlade-Chamberlain is a very good example. He only played 30 minutes of football but he came on and helped to change a match that was maybe going the wrong way and put us in a situation where we nearly won for the first time in many years in Brazil.

"I can understand with the World Cup being our main priority - nothing is more important, it can't be in football terms, than the World Cup - that Roy wanted the best squad he could get."

On England's U21 struggles in Israel, which have seen them bow out at the group stage after qualifying so convincingly, Bernstein added: "I was really expecting us to qualify from the group and to get to the semi-finals and maybe the final.

"So to be in the situation where the last match is meaningless is really very disappointing."

Related News

Most Commented

Readers' Comments

O

K FIFA we're done, you can ban us now

jimmyjazz
Barcelona transfer ban upheld

A

h Daniel. I could spend hours on this subject putting the world to rights. You can even take a step back and ask why football fans (and society in general) have this need to know that something will happen before it actually does. There are times this important, when it comes to things like war, food production and natural disasters. A man you've never met changing his job? Not so much.

ajsr1982
Time To Burst The ITK Bubble

G

reat article. Hits the nail on the head. Encapsulates why I don't read tabloid newspapers anymore. The only thing worse is the 'told you so first' headline when they get lucky.

ianonabeach
Time To Burst The ITK Bubble

Footer 365

Transfer news: Marco Reus said to have turned down move to Manchester United

Atletico Madrid president Enrique Cerezo has told Onda Cero that Marco Reus rejected a move to Man Utd this summer.

Transfer News: Swansea complete deal for Napoli defender Federico Fernandez

Swansea City have signed defender Federico Fernandez from Napoli for an undisclosed fee.

FIFA committee rejects Barcelona's appeal against transfer ban

Barcelona will be unable to sign new players in the next two windows after a FIFA committee upheld their transfer ban.

Mail Box

Mailbox: Feeling Sorry For Poor TC23

If there's one loser in all the machinations at Man United, it's poor TC23. We have mercifully few mails on United, but lots on Arsenal and in particular Olivier Giroud...

Dear Brendan, Please Sign Di Maria

That's the request to Brendan Rodgers in the mailbox, and not just because it would annoy Man United fans. Plus, more thoughts on why Arsenal didn't want Cescy back...

© 2014 British Sky Broadcasting Ltd. All Rights Reserved A Sky Sports Digital Media property