England: Ferdinand blasts Southgate tactics; Shearer admits there’s ‘no excuse’ for ‘poor’ performance

News Desk
England Southgate Ferdinand
Rio Ferdinand hits out at Gareth Southgate.

Rio Ferdinand and Alan Shearer hit out at England after their frustrating 1-1 draw against Denmark, with the latter saying there was “no excuse” for a performance that lacked energy.

England were unable to impose themselves in their second Group C outing in Germany after Harry Kane’s opener in Frankfurt was cancelled out by a superb strike from Morten Hjulmand.

“It was very poor, it wasn’t good enough…”

Former England captain Shearer, working as a pundit for the BBC, said: “You can see players lying on their backs – they look absolutely shattered, the England players. There’s no excuse for that.

“There was no energy, no pace to the game. We didn’t run in behind until the last 10 or 15 minutes, we got caught too many times on the ball, too many sloppy passes and in truth, Denmark were the better team and deserved to win.

“It was very poor, it wasn’t good enough. I wouldn’t say lack of effort, not trying, but there’s so much more to come from those players.”

Former England defender Rio Ferdinand bemoaned the tactics adopted by manager Gareth Southgate.

Asked about the performance, Ferdinand said: “Lacklustre, lacked any sort of direction in my eyes, tactically well below par – we were overshadowed tactically, I thought, by the Denmark team.

“You have to give them that respect, they were well-drilled, tactically superior, pressed us better, pressed us together.

“I thought England looked very average. Our best players, our most decisive players, our best players (are) at the top of the pitch and we choose to set up to defend.

“We’ve got too good players to sit back and hope to get through a game. We need to get to the bottom of, are they being told to do this, or are the players actually just being forced to do that by the opposition?”

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“I think we’re struggling both with and without the ball,” Kane, who was replaced by Ollie Watkins in the second half, told BBC One.

“I think the pressure in both games hasn’t been right and with the ball hasn’t been good enough. Everyone’s dropping below their levels a little bit.

“It was tough out there, but we’re calm. It wasn’t our greatest game, but we got away with a point.”

He added: “I think we said before the tournament there’s no easy games and I think that’s showing.

“We’ve got levels we can reach and we can be better both with and without the ball. I think the sign of a good team is when you’re not playing at your best and still find a way to get results like we have in the last two games.

“We’re top of the group. We know we can improve. Step by step, we’ll get there.”

“I know there will probably loads of noise and a bit of disappointment back home, but we experienced this in the last Euros as well when we drew to Scotland.”

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