Time for England to do a Van Gaal and go three at the back

Roy Hodgson closeup 2

Should England adopt a 3-5-2 formation against Costa Rica?

England seem to be on the brink of World Cup elimination after a defeat at the hands of Uruguay last night. They can however still qualify. Italy must do us a massive favour however and comfortably beat Costa Rica and Uruguay. Mario Balotelli says he expects a peck on the cheek from the Queen if he helps take England to the next stage - perhaps Her Majesty should pucker up.

But regardless of Italy doing us a favour or not England still need to beat Costa Rica on Tuesday to stand any chance of making it to the knockout stage. Considering they defeated Uruguay on matchday one it is not a straight forward quest.

But how should England go into the game? Is it time to change the structure of the team? Could England do the previously unimaginable ... and play three at the back.

Here is an example of how England could line-up against Costa Rica on Tuesday:


                                                                    Cahill Jagielka Jones

                                                     Milner Gerrard Henderson Lallana Baines

                                                                      Rooney Sturridge

It is a system that would drive Mike Bassett up the wall but why shouldn't England break the habit of a lifetime and ditch the four at the back system we have had such little success with.

Juventus play this system with aplomb, The Netherlands coach Louis van Gaal has also made the swap - with good results.

So why not England?

This system gives support to Gary Cahill and Phil Jagielka while it allows Leighton Baines the opportunity to go forward at will, or he can easily be replaced by Luke Shaw after a poor tournament from the Everton man. James Milner is almost custom made to play wing-back.

The three-men in the middle are all busy, hard working, players with the capability of finding a pass also in their repetoire.

It also allows England to play both Wayne Rooney and Daniel Sturridge in their favoured position - up front.

It is an idea that surely deserves some thought? Maybe now is the perfect time to ditch 4-4-expletive-2.

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