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

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

E

ven if United were to sign CR7 & Messi to play upfront, the fact remains Fletcher and Cleverly are playing in midfield. That's where the problem is. Fletcher is too slow with an awful pass, while Cleverly is simply rubbish

mrunited4life
Di Maria - A Signing of Necessity, or Opportunity?

T

hese days, these days, you can't say something racist without somebody saying that you're a racist.

tk421
'Wrong' Views Not Silenced By Shouting...

D

rop Rooney (he's so disappointing, overrated and overpaid), and play Di Maria and RVP upfront, much like the set up at the Netherlands team with Roben and RVP...

eric bush3
Di Maria - A Signing of Necessity, or Opportunity?

Footer 365

Indian Super League: Ex-Juventus star David Trezeguet eyes Alessandro Del Piero reunion

David Trezeguet welcomes the impending arrival of ex Juventus team-mate Alessandro Del Piero in the Indian Super League

Transfer news: Ajax say Manchester United have not made approach for Daley Blind

Ajax have had "no contact at all" from Man United over Daley Blind, who will only leave for the "absolute top price".

Transfer news: Nikola Zigic's agent confirms Arsenal's interest

The agent of ex-Birmingham striker Nikola Zigic has told SPORT that Arsenal have expressed an interest in his client.

Mail Box

Should Kagawa Play Ahead Of Mata?

That's one question posed in the afternoon mailbox, although it looks like the Japanese playmaker could soon be on his way. Plus, tipping Palace to go down under Warnock...

Well, This Isn't Going That Well Is It?

Plenty of fall out from Manchester United's shambolic 4-0 League Cup defeat, plus thoughts on Van Persie, Arsenal strikers, Benik Afobe, Celtic and Astroturf...

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