Roy Hodgson has intimated that he might look to change England’s personnel and system for their Group B clash with Wales on Thursday.
England opened their Euro 2016 campaign with a 1-1 draw against Russia in a game they dominated against inferior opponents.
Eric Dier opened the scoring for Hodgson’s men, who played a 4-3-3 formation, but England could not hold on for the victory and conceded a disappointing last-minute equaliser.
Hodgson has hinted he will review England’s system, having fielded a new look starting XI in the first game, featuring recalls for Adam Lallana and Raheem Sterling – with the former more successful than the latter – and captain Wayne Rooney playing in midfield for the first time in his long international career.
That experiment worked better than he might have hoped, with Rooney having had a crash course in the role at Manchester United last season.
“I think it would have been harder if Wayne hadn’t been playing that position for United,” said Hodgson.
“That’s what made it a solution for us, something we thought we would like to do.
“We definitely wanted Wayne in the team for this game, definitely wanted him to captain the team in the opening game for a number of reasons.
“We also really wanted to see Sterling and Lallana in the wider positions because we felt they would cause Russia some problems and I thought they did.”
Hodgson may yet revert to two specialists strikers and a four-man midfield against Wales, particularly with Leicester striker Jamie Vardy straining at the leash to make a mark on his first major tournament.
“When we selected our squad…we wanted options in the front positions to play 4-4-2 – the diamond – and 4-3-3,” said the 68-year-old.
“It doesn’t take lot of changing if we go from one to the other. The principles we work on remain the same and players work on both in training sessions.”