England campaign leaves Rio unimpressed
Rio Ferdinand has criticised Roy Hodgson's management at Euro 2012, claiming the England boss underused his younger players and was too defensive in his tactics.
The 33-year-old defender, who was overlooked by Hodgson for his squad for the tournament, wanted to see Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain and Phil Jones given more game time and also criticised Hodgson's choice of formation, and questioned whether Italy playmaker Andrea Pirlo would even have been selected for the Three Lions squad.
He told The Sun: "I am a fan of The Ox and I wanted to see more of him but in the end he finished up as a spectator."
He went on: "Phil Jones is one of the most adaptable players we have in our country and where was he? When we need to take the ball from midfield, run 40 yards with it and put the other team on the back foot, he is the man for the job.
"Instead, we stayed cautious and Jordan Henderson was used instead. That's not a criticism of Jordan, he is a different player to Phil, but I thought it showed we were being too conservative."
Since England's exit, Hodgson has talked about getting more young players into the team for the upcoming World Cup qualifying campaign.
Ferdinand said: "I'm reading a lot of stuff about how it's time to get the youngsters in and all of that but you only find out if they can do it when you throw them in there.
"What did we learn about Alex and Phil at this tournament? Do we know how much influence Alex can have on a game in a finals? He did fairly well against France, so why not persist with him and let him grow into it?
"As for Phil, we will now have to wait until the 2014 World Cup in Brazil, provided we qualify, to see how good he can be at the highest level. Expectations were low so the manager had a free shot to find out about our youngsters and I feel it was a missed opportunity."
Ferdinand was impressed by the performance of Pirlo, but added: "If Pirlo was English would he have made the squad let alone been on the pitch? I don't know as his qualities may have been overlooked... not by just the current manager but maybe those before him too."
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