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Hodgson must talk to Frank if England lead against Uruguay

| 17.06.2014

Judgement day has arrived for England in their quest to progress at the World Cup as they take on Uruguay in Sao Paulo, with anything other than three points strictly off the menu.

After a lively display against Italy there is no shortage of hope that Roy Hodgson’s boyos can get the job done against Uruguay, who were unexpectedly defeated by Group D small fry Costa Rica in game one.

The market is certainly receptive to that theory, with the Three Lions warm 11/10 favourites for three points, the draw at 5/2 and the Uruguayans set at 13/5 by Ladbrokes.

Naturally, there are plenty of debates raging about this potentially cataclysmic clash, not least whether Wayne Rooney is restored to his preferred number 10 role or if Luis Suarez is really fit to play to his full potential from the first whistle.

Answers to those questions will soon be provided in the Arena Corinthians but a topic which will get less air time is what England should do if they find themselves in an advantageous position, with 30 minutes still to play.

Given the array of exciting talent sure to be warming the woodwork, then throwing on a Ross Barkley in order to go for the jugular and ramp up the goal difference will be sorely tempting.

However, that is exactly the time Hodgson should be giving vice-captain Frank Lampard – who will celebrate his 36th birthday the following morning – his Brazilian bow.

Clearly brought to Brazil by the former Fulham gaffer as a role model for the youngsters to learn from, there is no one better to call upon if calm heads are called for in the latter stages.

The Chelsea veteran can retain the ball with consummate ease and use his nous to slow proceedings down.

All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing.

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Christian Crowther

Give Christian a sport with anything remotely spherical in it and he’ll happily while away the hours watching it on the box. However, he’d much prefer writing about, playing or betting on golf, football, cricket, tennis, snooker.... you get the picture.