England v Hungary: UEFA Nations League - League Path Group 3
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'Would suit us perfectly': Lineker says he'd 'love to see' England replicate Jurgen Klopp's Liverpool

Gary Lineker would ‘love to see’ England play like Liverpool and regrets that they didn’t on Tuesday. Hungary smashed them 4-0, of course.

England suffered their most humiliating defeat in decades on Tuesday evening as Hungary went to Wembley and won 4-0. It was all very 1953, when the Three Lions were torn to shreds by Hungary – then the best team in the world.

That was a match that changed English football. It might shock you to learn that England arrogantly believed themselves to be the best in the world back then, dismissing the World Cup as not very important. Instead, playing football in England was the game’s gold standard – they’d never lost at home, after all.

Then Hungary beat them 6-3 at Wembley, sparking a complete rethink. The Hungarians’ tactics overwhelmed England as they played with a revolutionary deep-lying centre-forward and strikers who ran off him. Humbled, English football changed away from the then-dominant W-M formation and modernised.

Which all feels very relevant right now. The England team certainly doesn’t play with modern, revolutionary tactics – despite the fact that the game’s best managers operate in the country.

In fact, Gary Lineker believes it’s a misstep for Gareth Southgate to ignore the likes of Liverpool and their playing style.

“I said previously that England missed a trick by not resting all their important players so they’d be fresh for the World Cup,” Lineker wrote on Twitter. “Would have also loved to have seen us adopt Liverpool’s way of playing.

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“Would suit us perfectly. I also acknowledge I’ve never been a coach.”

England to play like Liverpool

Now, England obviously couldn’t play exactly like Liverpool. Few national sides can play like club sides, though, as they can’t go out and buy the right players. Instead, you’ve got to build a system that fits what you’ve got.

But England actually have quite a few options that would work with Liverpool’s system. In fact, they’ve got several players who tick the key boxes.

First and foremost, they’ve got Trent Alexander-Arnold at right-back. The Scouser is a creative force and should really be the first name on the teamsheet for England. The fact that he struggles to start verges on the ridiculous.

England also have Jordan Henderson, of course, who plays a key role in organising Liverpool from the middle. As well as covering Alexander-Arnold on the flank.

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Declan Rice can certainly do a Fabinho impression in the middle, while Harry Kane is a solid False 9. He naturally drops deep anyway – arguably more than he should – while England boast pace out wide to attack the space in behind.

Really, all they lack are centre-back options that can play with a very high line. But the likes of Fikayo Tomori show that the next generation of centre-backs have what it takes to play that way. At the very least, Joe Gomez exists.

Of course, replicating Liverpool is virtually impossible as they have better players and more time together to fine-tune things. But England certainly boast the talent to play in a more aggressive, modern style, much as Lineker suggests.

And perhaps a hiding from Hungary is once again the thing that triggers change in that direction.

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