David Holdsworth: England need structure to follow Spain's masterplan
This week the trials and tribulations of England will grab the headlines as they take the next steps in their World Cup qualifying campaign.
When you look through the squad there is probably only Joe Hart who I would say is a world class player.
You may argue Ashley Cole and Wayne Rooney, but they are very much open for debate. Cole has not been pushed for his place for a long time and Rooney has not set the world alight for me for a while.
It is a depressing situation and sadly the Football Association have only themselves to blame.
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The England football team is one that is well behind the rest of the leading nations in the rest of Europe – especially Spain.
What is holding us back? Quite simply, our structure.
Every team in football needs a structure. Be it here at Lincoln City in the Blue Square Premier, Arsenal in the Premier League or Spain in the international set up.
What I mean by structure is setting out your aims, deciding how you are going to reach that, and then getting on and implementing it.
Spain did this brilliantly. A nation for so long which was off the pace on the international scene has set out a formation and system they want to adhere to and then developed the youth coaching to deliver it.
Before them France did it and Germany right now are developing a lot of good young players.
Here in England we cannot even decide on the formation. We swap and change to suit the opposition, rather than making the opposition worry about us.
It has gone on for so long and it is only now being addressed.
Roy Hodgson is the man having to deal with the legacy of not having a structure and he has a tough job because of it.
The lack of a structure has left Hodgson very little to pick from in terms of players and he is also not helped by the circus that has become attached to it in recent years.
Right now he is at a point where he is trying to develop his team for two years down the line.
He should be thinking, 'Frank Lampard, will he be part of my plans for Brazil in 2014?', of course he won't.
But if Hodgson even dared to think he should try and develop a team for two years down the line at the expense of some big names he is in danger of being rounded on by the critics.
If anything, John Terry deciding to retire from international football was the best break Hodgson could have.
I believe if Hodgson and England are to succeed there needs to be a real long-term plan in place.
We need to address the youth coaching.
Why are young kids being moved up to play on adult sized pitches?
It is ridiculous.
It is time for us to show some guts, get a structure in place and stop looking for a quick fix.