Eriksson not worried about experimentation

Updated: 25 February 2007 10:34 IST

England coach Sven-Goran Eriksson believes experimenting with new playing formations just days before the World Cup is the right way to go

Eriksson not worried about experimentation

Manchester:

England coach Sven-Goran Eriksson believes experimenting with new playing formations just days before the World Cup is the right way to go.With Wayne Rooney out for England's opening group matches, Eriksson decided to drop England's traditional 4-4-2 formation and replace the Manchester United striker with attacking midfielder Steven Gerrard in a 3-1 friendly win over Hungary on Tuesday.Michael Owen played alone up front and Jamie Carragher - normally a fullback - played in defensive midfield, with Frank Lampard playing just ahead and David Beckham and Joe Cole on the flanks."I'm very happy if it's confusing for other people," Eriksson said. "I can tell you there is no confusion at all in the training camp."Eriksson has hinted those who started on Tuesday will start the Cup opener against Paraguay on June 10 in Frankfurt.Eriksson kept the same formation even when he made substitutions. When Gary Neville came off as a precaution with a hamstring strain at halftime, Carragher moved to right back and Bayern Munich's Owen Hargreaves took over in defensive midfield.Peter Crouch, who lost his starting position up front with Owen with the new formation, came on as a substitute and scored. Theo Walcott also came on, breaking Rooney's record as England's youngest player, aged 17 years and 75 days."After Wayne Rooney's injury, we have to look at another option as well and I think it's right to do it," Eriksson said. The bold experimentation is a departure for the normally cautious Eriksson, who ends his five-and-a-half-year tenure as England coach after the World Cup. He sees this formation as the best way to get the best out of Gerrard and Lampard, who play in similar attacking midfield positions for their English Premier League clubs Liverpool and Chelsea.England plays its final warmup match against Jamaica on Saturday. (AP)



Topics : Football
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