England have finished a season unbeaten for the first time in 24 years. The Three Lions won 3-2 in Slovenia on Sunday evening to make it six wins out of six in Euro 2016 qualifying. Despite the victory there were still doubts raised over the performance.
England’s defence was again far from perfect as a very average Slovenia team put two goals past the helpless Joe Hart. The back four of Phil Jones, Gary Cahill, Chris Smalling and Kieran Gibbs is not first choice.
However the problem that England boss Roy Hodgson has is that he currently has not got a settled first choice defence. Jones is not a right-back by any stretch of the imagination and was substituted at half-time against Slovenia.
The Manchester United defender was criticised after the game by Hodgson, but what does the Three Lions boss expect when he plays Jones out of position. His best position, if any, is at centre-back. He was never going to thrive as a full-back.
Hodgson had the very capable Southampton right-back Nathaniel Clyne on the bench, yet waited until the last ten minutes to put him on.
Instead Hodgson brought on midfielder Adam Lallana for Jones at the break and moved Liverpool midfielder Jordan Henderson to right-back.
Hopefully the England boss has learnt his lesson from his poor team selection. However, for England to progress he needs to have a settled defence, which means playing players in their favoured positions.
England cannot continue to defend like a team of schoolboys, because the big boys at Euro 2016 will come and steal their ball and take it home with them.
Who should be playing in England’s defence?