Football Association chairman Greg Dyke has tipped Roy Hodgson to lead England to the semi-finals of Euro 2016 but insists suggestions of a new contract for the head coach are premature.
Dyke famously foretold the Three Lions’ early exit from last year’s World Cup when he made a tongue-in-cheek throat-slitting gesture after they were drawn alongside Italy, Uruguay and Costa Rica.
But after Hodgson’s men were dealt a kinder hand for next summer’s finals on Saturday, when they were grouped with Wales, Russia and Slovakia, Dyke dared to look ahead to the latter stages in France.
“My reaction to the draw overall is, ‘Yeah, that’s fine’. It’s not the hardest, it’s not the easiest, but it’s fine. We’ll be hopeful of getting through that group,” he said.
“I think we’ve got a good chance in this tournament. There’s some good sides but I think we’ve certainly got a good chance to get through to the last four and, if we do that, you can win. We’re amongst the best sides there.”
Hodgson’s contract expires after the European Championships and, though FA chief executive Martin Glenn has talked up an extension, Dyke stressed any deal rested solely on next summer’s performance.
“If we have been successful, we will want him to stay on. If we’re less successful, then we’d have to think again. I think if we don’t get out of the group stage, Roy wouldn’t want to continue,” he added.
Dyke called the prospect of a clash with a Wales side featuring stars such as Gareth Bale and Aaron Ramsey “exciting” and “the sexiest of the three” possible Home Nations opponents.
The Republic of Ireland were drawn with Belgium, Italy and Sweden, while Northern Ireland will face world champions Germany, Poland and Ukraine.