Hoddle already looking ahead

10 October 2013 07:46

Former England manager Glenn Hoddle has backed Roy Hodgson to take the current side to next summer's World Cup finals in Brazil - but does not expect them to win.

Hoddle, who steered England to the knock-out stages of the 1998 World Cup and is now part of the Football Association commission looking at ways to improve the national team's fortunes, believes qualification is an important stepping stone and that the 2016 European Championship is a more realistic target.

England need to beat Montenegro on Friday and Poland next Tuesday to be certain of their place in Brazil.

"I'm very, very positive that we'll win both games," said Hoddle.

"I think we'll qualify for Brazil, which is very important for the experience.

"I think we've got to be realistic about going to South America to win - a European side's never done it before. There's better opportunities for Spain and Belgium.

"But you don't need to be the best team in a tournament to win it.

"We can go there with optimism, but we need to really have one eye, I think, on the Euros in two years' time and let these younger players have the experience of playing in a World Cup and tournament football to be better down the line and better equipped to have a go at the Euros."

FA chairman Greg Dyke has made winning the 2022 World Cup a target, but Hoddle believes winning a major tournament could happen sooner than in Qatar.

Hoddle added: "Let's hope we haven't got to wait that long. I think there's possibilities we can do that."

Source: PA