Football

Seedorf: Drop either Rooney or Sturridge

England's 2-1 defeat by Italy in their World Cup Group D clash with Italy caught the eye of former Holland star Clarence Seedorf, who said it was the first time in a long time that he has seen an England team play attractive football.

High praise indeed, coming from the former attacking midfielder who prides himself on playing the beautiful game as how it is.

However, Seedorf admitted that, for England to make their mark on the tournament, the Three Lions will need to take a bold step and drop either Wayne Rooney or Daniel Sturridge, reported the Daily Mail.

"I really enjoyed their performance, despite the result. They played with real flair, particularly Raheem Sterling.

But if England are to make a real mark on this tournament, either Wayne Rooney or Daniel Sturridge needs to start Thursday's match against Uruguay on the bench.

"Yes, it is a tough decision for Roy Hodgson (England manger) to leave one of them out, but they both play the same position. There would also then be the advantage of bringing one of them off the bench to change the game.

"You need to keep one of your 'firework' players on the substitutes' bench for when the opposition are tiring - Argentina did it well with Gonzalo Higuain against Bosnia and Herzegovina.

"It's a bigger sacrifice to put Rooney out on the left than on the bench. Unlike a lot of people, I thought Rooney played well against Italy, so it is a tough choice between him and Sturridge, who is in such good form.

The former AC Milan player and manager also highlighted that captain Steven Gerrard needs someone to help share the midfield duties in order to bring out the best in Gerrard.

"I would also like to see England give Steven Gerrard more support. He was having to defend, create and attack on Saturday, which is too much for one person to do.

"If England support him more, he will have more energy, which is vital as when his energy dropped after an hour against Italy, England faded."

Seedorf also called on the English fans to be less critical and to channel all their energy into creating a positive mood for the England players to feed on.

"English fans can sometimes be a bit harsh on their team, so I hope there is a real positive energy created around the team.

"It has been a long season and, although it sounds simple, loud support from the fans does give players extra power.

"Football is an entertainment business and the players would be nowhere without the fans. At tournaments like this, they need them more than ever." - Wire Services.

World Cup