Hodgson: New boys played quite Cleverley


ENGLAND manager Roy Hodgson was full of praise for last night’s debutants after his youthful side came back from behind to defeat Italy in Berne.

Jack Butland and Tom Cleverley played from the start and John Ruddy, Ryan Bertrand and Jake Livermore played their first matches as substitutes as goals from Phil Jagielka and Jermain Defoe rendered Daniele De Rossi’s header ultimately peripheral.

“It was good to blood new players and give some others who haven’t played so much a chance,” said Hodgson in Switzerland. “They answered the challenge in the best possible way – it was a good victory.

“It might have been different if all the players had been the same as the ones throughout the Euros.

“I have been pleased to see [Cleverley] in the form he has been showing this season and it was terrific for him to play for the England first team.

“It is not about systems, it is more about players. The three guys in midfield passed the ball and controlled the ball well and the wide players did well too.”

It was in the 15th minute that De Rossi powerfully headed in from an Italy corner but when Phil Jagielka dived to head a 27th-minute equaliser, England were given a lift that eventually resulted in Defoe’s outstanding late winner.