Bayern Munich's Philipp Lahm suggests England will have to wait for glory due to the nature of Roy Hodgson's young side.
Lahm, like many others, appears bemused as to why the England national side struggles so badly. Speaking in his exclusive interview with the Daily Mail, he said, "It’s difficult for me to say why that’s the case. I think they’ve got good players and it’s good they’re bringing in more young players and I think it might take a while before they can be successful."
Hodgson has always maintained his faith in youth, and throughout his reign as England boss, we have seen a number of the Premier League's less experienced faces make a breakthrough at international level. We witnessed this at the summer World Cup in Brazil, with teenagers Ross Barkley and Luke Shaw both earning call-ups.
Nonetheless, it proved a tournament to forget for the Three Lions as they struggled to defeat against Italy and Uruguay, before enduring a goalless draw with eventual group winners Costa Rica. Hodgson's side therefore crashed out of the first round, having secured just a single point.
"You could see at this World Cup that it’s not that easy to get that far," he said. "In the group stage it used to be the European teams who got through and the South Americans went a round further. But now everything’s much tighter and it’s difficult getting to the round of 16."
Germany, of course, went on to win in South America, winning the FIFA World Cup for the fourth time in the nation's history. Lahm, who captained his side to victory, recognises the narrow margins between success and failure at this level.
"As England, Germany, France or Italy, we can’t afford to get knocked out in the group stages because the past tells us we’ve all been successful," he said. "Every player knows that and the young players, too. You know when you’ve played in two or three that the next tournament will be easier to deal with. You can say it’s very, very important to win the first game so you’re not under as much pressure in the second or third games."
A glimmer of hope for the Three Lions, perhaps? As the younger players grow accustomed to the nature of tournament football, will we witness for success? Hodgson's side is currently undergoing a period of rejuvenation, similar to that of the German team following the the 2006 World Cup.