England novices out of their depth against Dutch masters

Trevor Steven
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NEW Manager, new kit but same old story; last night’s defeat to Holland at Wembley taught us nothing we weren’t already depressingly aware of.

England remain light years behind the continent’s finest and will go to the European Championships in the summer almost certain to repeat the same mistakes that saw them head home from the 2010 World Cup with nothing but shattered reputations.

A certain amount of experimentation in a friendly is par for the course, but the majority of the squad, even the skipper Scott Parker – who should never have been chosen to wear the armband ahead of Steven Gerrard – selected by Stuart Pearce are the equivalent of trialists at international level.

You cannot possibly hope to express yourself fully in such a disjointed set-up and it’s no wonder the likes of Daniel Sturridge, Danny Welbeck and Chris Smalling looked the inexperienced, raw talents they are.

For me, those players should be nowhere near an England starting XI just yet, despite the temptation there must be to place faith in the next generation, such has been the disappointment supporters have endured following the exploits of the previous incumbents.

More than personnel, however, England will win nothing until they change their style of play and rely on technique rather than speed.

Wesley Sneijder gave a masterclass last night and at walking pace. Arsenal’s Jack Wilshere is cut from the same cloth but to me it’s a complete fluke a player like that has come through our system. For England fans I fear it’s going to get worse before it gets better.