It’s only the first match of Euro 2016 qualifying but England took a high step towards France with a 2-0 win over Switzerland in Basel. New Arsenal striker Danny Welbeck scored both goals, his first international goals in more than a year to lead the three lions to victory.
The 23-year-old showed why Arsenal paid £16m for his signature as he turned home a Raheem Sterling cross on a lightning counter-attack that also involved captain Wayne Rooney. And the former Manchester United man rounded off the win in injury time with a well-taken finish.
England boss Roy Hodgson spoke out strongly following criticism of his team at Wembley last Wednesday against Norway, but he has nothing but praise after seeing his attacking triumvirate of Welbeck, Raheem Sterling and Wayne Rooney tear the Swiss defense to shreds, and England could and should have won more comfortably than they did.
“It was a bold approach but we decided there was no point coming here for a 0-0, we want this team to progress” said Hodgson afar the match.
“When we can counter-attack. the pace, energy and youth of the team is shown.”
“Two important players in that system are Jack Wilshere and Raheem Sterling, at the base and at the tip of the diamond,” Hodgson said.
“We wanted to get them on the ball. We thought that Switzerland would find it hard to deal with it and they had to change their system in the second half.
“This is the way forward. We’ve got to back them.
“We adopted a reasonably bold approach because I know if it’s going to work in the future, if this group of players is going to become any good, we have to do it from the start.”
Give Hodgson credit. He has shown a willingness to go with youth and be a lot more attack minded than most England supporters thought when he took the job.
Switzerland are by far the toughest opponent for England in this group and the England players must be confident that they will top this group.
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