thumbnail Hello,

The Three Lions coach insists that Roy Hodgson's side are a top-eight nation at most after failing to progress past the quarter-final stage at a major tournament for 16 years

Gary Neville insists that it is a "fact" that England are only one of the top eight nations in world football at best.

The Three Lions have not reached the last four of a major tournament since losing on penalties to Germany in the semi-finals of the European Championships in 1996, on home soil.

Roy Hodgson's men came close to sealing a semi-final place at Euro 2012 but Ashley Young and Ashley Cole failed from the spot in a dramatic penalty shootout defeat to Italy.

Neville, a member of Hodgson's backroom staff, told the Independent: "We have to see ourselves in the light of Spain, Portugal, France, Italy, Germany, Argentina, Brazil.

"TO PROVE MY POINT..."
4/1 England are 4/1 with Bet365 not to qualify for World Cup 2014
"In terms of tournaments and measuring ourselves, the measure of an England team this last 10 or 12 years has been mainly around quarter-finals. It tells you where we are at. We are in the top eight teams in the world. That's fact."

England were criticised for struggling to keep hold of possession at the Euros, but Neville feels that it would be "disrespectful" to assume that they would be capable of dominating matches against the likes of Brazil and Spain.

"I never saw an England team in the last 40 years that kept possession against teams like France, Italy, Brazil, Spain and Argentina," he continued. "Wake up everybody!"

"I played for England for a lot of years and wanted to keep the ball better, wanted to be more successful, wanted a winning team – all those things.

"But it's disrespectful to other nations and arrogant to just dismiss them and talk about 'oh, we are England, we talk about ourselves'."

Related

From the web