Lee Dixon - Dawson should be playing for England

Good to hear some common sense on the TV for a change and it came in the shape of an Arsenal defender who knows all about the art of defending, Lee Dixon.

With England's problems at centre-back Michael Dawson should be there he felt. Now I don't think Dawson is international standard myself but then nor is any England centre-back at the moment. Smalling doesn't play club football there, Cahill is very average and gets caught out every game. Phil Jagielka is injured but like Dawson is only Premier League standard anyway so if he can play then so can Dawson.

Dixon mentioned that he watched Dawson st the weekend and he was outstanding, which he was. Spurs fans rarely look at the parts of a side to discover why mistakes are happening for a normally very reliable defender.

For Spurs the left side of defence has been a weakness virtually all season. Rose has poor positional sense and Chiriches throws a spanner in the works. Poor on his left side, poor in the air, and positionally a liability, he forces Dawson to not only do his own job but to try and cover for Vlad as well, which is where mistakes start to appear.

The Spurs captain has been far better with Vertonghen beside him, demonstrating the huge difference in standard between the Belgian and the Romanian.

There are times in every game where you have to take a chance, like when we were 1-0 down to Norwich and Dawson went for a ball that bounced over him. Heading the ball was not an option, nor was going back, we were running out of time. Cover was there so he took a calculated risk and tried to get there so the ball could go straight back forward.

That some fans put down as a mistake but if you understand the game, the requirements of the situation, you realise that it was not a mistake but a risk, an effort that didn't come off.

When a player makes what appears to be a mistake then you must look for the reason why for justification. Sometimes you'll find it was a wrong pass 3 balls earlier. For instance, if you pass the ball to a full-back on the line as our midfielders sometimes do he has nothing he can do with it. I have seen several instances where he is left with little choice but to pass back to Dawson who is immediately them under pressure.

The mistake is not Dawson's in that instance, nor is it the full-back playing him into trouble, it's the midfielder who has caused the whole problem that others have got to try and get him out of.

The analysis of Denmark's major chance in the first half in the studio by Hoddle and Dixon said it all. Cahill 5 yards out of position, Smalling not coming across early enough so neither can Ashley Cole. England need someone at centre-back who knows what they are doing and can lead the defence.

There was an instance in the England game from the free-kick when Wilshire was injured in the first-half where England took 8 passes to get beyond the first man. It's hardly any wonder the side struggle to create with such negative tactics. England certainly haven't gone forwards in more ways than one under Roy 'I'm only her to save the FA £4m a year' Hodgson. The team still have little idea what they are doing, playing slow ponderous football where we give away far more chances than we create.

In Brazil slow ponderous football may be the name of the game but if you are poor defensively when playing it you are in trouble. England scrapped through an easy group and will undoubtedly make hard work of getting out of a World Cup group before being eliminated.

One game before a World Cup and the manger is playing players out of position hoping they can learn the role in 1 game, utterly ludicrous.

But then Roy Hodgson was an utterly ludicrous appointment in the first place.





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