Wembley Stadium

Next Game

England v Slovenia

Saturday, 15 November 2014, 17:00

European Qualifiers Group E

Last Game

Estonia 0 - 1 England

Sunday, 12 October 2014, 17:00

European Qualifiers Group E

Hodgson: World Cup is pinnacle

England boss Roy Hodgson has ridiculed those who claim the Champions League is a bigger tournament than the World Cup.

Last Updated: 20/10/13 at 10:29 Post Comment

Roy Hodgson: Insists World Cup remains pinnacle for players

Roy Hodgson: Insists World Cup remains pinnacle for players

Former Manchester United manager Sir Alex Ferguson was among those who claimed the most prestigious club tournament was at a higher level as all the world's best players were involved.

In Ferguson's view, the World Cup lacks the same edge because some players - Robert Lewandowski being an obvious example - miss out because their countries lack enough players of the same standard to compete.

However, speaking in the aftermath of England's win over Poland that booked automatic passage to next summer's finals in Brazil, and from his own knowledge of being at the 1994 tournament with Switzerland, Hodgson cannot agree with such sentiments.

"That must be propaganda from the Champions League," said Hodgson.

"I think you will find most players, at the end of their careers, would say going to the World Cup was their best moment.

"Not many will be saying it was playing in the group stages of the Champions League against Standard Liege on a Wednesday night."

That is not to say Hodgson has no time for the Champions League.

Just that, in his view, there is no comparison with a tournament that rivals the Olympic Games as the biggest show on earth.

"Statements that the Champions League knocks the World Cup into a cocked hat knock me for six," he said.

"I like the Champions League. It is a great competition.

"But the World Cup is often described, in sporting terms, as the greatest show on earth.

"It is certainly watched by the most number of people, there is no question about that."

And even though the Premier League is back on centre stage this weekend and assessments of his own team have been brutally realistic until their most recent triumphs, Hodgson knows the country will start to get swept along by World Cup fever as the tournament countdown begins.

Not that the 66-year-old always feels the general assessment of the situation justifies the usual triumphalist media coverage.

"I am not certain what is actually written is swallowed wholeheartedly by the people who go to the games," he said.

"When we go to World Cups, we will always have the situation when a large body of the mass media are saying this is the one we have to win.

"I am just not convinced that is what the general public think and believe.

"We can all shout but if you really believe something you have to be prepared to back it up.

"It is easy to write headlines saying 'this is the one' but people don't have to back it up with anything."

Related News

Most Commented

Readers' Comments

C

an we release him in January?

dhirt11
Gerrard: I would leave Anfield

E

xcellent! Not sure if he is any good as a manager (never thought about it) but the 'headbutt in the technical area' and what he said to Pelligrini were just brilliant, it was as if he was trying to recreate the end of the Alan Partridge Xmas special when Alan punched a man in a wheelchair and verbally abused Tony Heirs.

beachend
Football Managers On TV: Alan Pardew

I

think you spelt Inter Milan wrong in your headline.

quoasis
Ince joins Forest on loan

Footer 365

Steven Gerrard says Daniel Sturridge is the best English striker

Liverpool captain Steven Gerrard believes Daniel Sturridge is the best English striker he has played alongside.

Manchester derby: David Silva ruled out with knee ligament injury

David Silva has been ruled out of Sunday's Manchester derby after injuring his knee against Newcastle.

Premier League: Steven Gerrard could leave Liverpool in summer to further playing career

Steven Gerrard says he will leave Liverpool for another club in the summer if he is not offered a new contract.

Mail Box

'Pride' Didn't Stop Wenger Signing Flamini

Arsene Wenger's 'pride' in signings is quite rightly pulled apart. We also have a stupidly long email on going back, and one Mailboxer whooping about the FA Cup first round...

Wenger Kept His Pride By Turning Down Cesc

What message would it have sent if Wenger had allowed those that walked out to stroll back in? Plus, why Pochettino needs to adapt and the folly of limiting yourself...

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