Kevin Davies picks England XI - Liverpool dominate midfield

Three Lions Wembley

Former Southampton and Bolton Wanderers forward has selected a starting XI consisting of players from Arsenal, Chelsea and Everton.

If England cannot convincingly defeated San Marino on Thursday evening, in their second European Qualifier of the 2016 campaign, then "everyone should resign."

That is the opinion of once-capped England international Kevin Davies, now 37 and at Preston North End, who believes Roy Hodgson has one of two decisions to make. He either a: makes a statement, fields his strongest team and guns for a big-scoring win or b: offers chances to less experienced players.

If Davies were to select the England XI, he would be tempted to set his team up in a near 2-4-4 system and even argued that Joe Hart could pull a Manuel Neuer by operating as an auxiliary sweeper in a 5-5 formation.

In the Preston veteran's selection, Southampton star-in-the-making Nathaniel Clyne and accomplished Evertonian Leighton Baines flank Calum Chambers and Gary Cahill in the centre back positions - an area of the park he believes will be fairly quiet, thus prompting the full backs to bomb forward with regularity.

"I’ve then got Adam Lallana on the left and Raheem Sterling on the right, with Jordan Henderson and Jack Wilshere in the middle," said Davies, to Sky Sports.

"Lallana’s goal for Liverpool last weekend will have given him a lot of confidence after coming back from injury," he noted.

Because of the presence of Lallana, Sterling and Henderson, it is very much a Liverpool dominated midfield, with no room for Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain - a player who performed admirably in an England shirt ahead of the 2014 FIFA World Cup tournament.

"I did consider putting Oxlade-Chamberlain in but I can’t wait to see what Lallana can do in these two games for England.

"I toyed with playing Danny Welbeck out wide but he deserves a chance to play up front – especially with Daniel Sturridge out of the squad as well."

Davies though would not be surprised if Hodgson were to offer opportunities to "fringe" players like Kieran Gibbs and Fabian Delph.

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