England boss Roy Hodgson has insisted that his side fear no one in the knockout stage of Euro 2016 despite their disappointing results in Group B.
Following their goalless draw with Slovakia in Saint-Etienne on Monday night, England finished the group stage with just one win from their three games and finished second behind Wales.
In turn, that is likely to make their path to the latter stages of the tournament more complicated, as an inability to make the most of their possession and chances created could come back to haunt them.
However, Hodgson isn’t concerned with the situation, as ultimately he’s impressed with what he’s seen from the players so far, and believes that the goals will come.
“We’re not doomed yet,” he told reporters after the game. “We can’t do much more, we dominated the game from start to finish, we had so many chances and one day we will put them away. I can’t fault the effort and work of the players.
“It is a little bit embarrassing – it has been attack versus defence in all three games and I never thought I’d see England dominate three games like we have done.
“Sooner or later we will get the reward for our play. Someone might find themselves on the end of a tough result. Soon we will make someone pay.
“We will be criticised for not taking chances, I can’t deny that, but I think the time will come when we will take those goal chances, and some team will be on the end of that fairly soon.
“But we’ll wait and see; we’re in the knockout phase which is where we wanted to be. I’m not frightened of anyone.”
Hodgson can certainly be encouraged with what he’s seen so far, as many other top nations have also struggled to score regularly in the group stages given the new format and the mentality that many of their rivals have had going into games.
Nevertheless, his team will have to step up a level from the next round onwards and while they’re unlikely to enjoy the same level of possession that they’ve had so far, they will undoubtedly need to put away their chances or risk being made to pay against higher level opposition.