Scolari: England's young players have responded well to selection

The Brazil manager credited Roy Hodgson for looking to the future as Three Lions coach and praised 21-year-old Neymar's focus despite his recent move to Barcelona
Brazil manager Luiz Felipe Scolari has credited England manager Roy Hodgson for introducing young players into his side and believes the national team has improved technically as a result.

The Three Lions went a goal down against the World Cup 2014 host nation at the Maracana Stadium in Rio de Janeiro, but fought back with two excellent strikes from 19-year-old Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain and Wayne Rooney to take a 2-1 lead before Paulinho equalised for the hosts.

The 64-year-old has plenty of experience of facing England, having eliminated them at the quarter-final stage of two World Cups and a European Championship as coach of Brazil and Portugal.

"The English team have a renewed team and good technical players," Scolari told reporters before the match. "You can see that the young players their coach has selected have responded well.

"In the last 10 to 15 years England has improved a lot technically. Now this coach has put many young players in his team and maybe now the national team for England is better than before, even if other teams are still ahead - Spain, Germany, and maybe even Brazil."

Scolari also opted for youth ahead of experienced players such as Ronaldinho and Kaka in the latest Brazil squad and refuted suggestions that Neymar, the star of the new generation, would be distracted by his move to Barcelona.

"There was a slight concern but since he joined up with the squad he has been excellent," the former Chelsea boss insisted. "It is not just about him, he has 10 other players and he is a team player.

"He's very happy to play for Barcelona and for Brazil - he has no load on his shoulders whatsoever. He won't have extra responsibility at Barcelona, they know how to share that responsibility with other great players such as Messi."