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The former Three Lions striker believes his national side lack experience in major tournaments and tips Vicente del Bosque’s side to defend European Championship crown

EXCLUSIVE
By Alberto Pinero

Former England striker Teddy Sheringham has told Goal.com the Three Lions must learn to imitate Spain if they are to have any chance of winning Euro 2012.

Roy Hodgson’s men enter the competition with low expectations for the first time in decades.

And Sheringham tips Euro 2008 and 2010 World Cup winners Spain to continue their international domination in Poland and Ukraine this month.

He exclusively told Goal.com: “My favourite to win the Euros are Spain, absolutely. England? No, England are not a favourite.

“England will win the Euros when they are capable of keeping the ball for as long as Spain usually do.”

Hodgson replaced Fabio Capello as England manager with just over a month to go until the tournament started, after the Italian coach quit over John Terry being removed as captain by the FA.

“Roy Hodgson is a good choice as England coach,” Sheringham stressed. “But he has little time to change the mindset of people. It is a good signing, but not to win the Euros.”

Frank Lampard, Gareth Barry and Gary Cahill had to withdraw from the Three Lions squad after picking up injuries in the build-up to Euro 2012.

Sheringham added: “England will suffer the late withdrawals. Besides, they have very young players. You always want experience when you get these tournaments.

“When England reached the semi-finals in 1996, we had experienced players at the peak of their careers.

“Now there are very young players, I think this Euro will be positive for the future. But not now, I think it's too soon.”

Sheringham played for Manchester United’s legends team on Monday against Real Madrid. Although he scored, the Spanish giants - consisting of former players such as Luis Figo - won 3-2.

“It was great to play in the Heart Classic Match against Real Madrid, in a formidable scenario as the Santiago Bernabeu,” the ex-Old Trafford star said.

“The two teams have tried to win, to show scoring goals, that's what people want. It was a great afternoon.

“And besides, I scored a nice goal, better than the penalty that I missed, of course.”

The former Tottenham player will forever be remembered in the north west of England as scoring the late equaliser in United’s 2-1 win over Bayern Munich in the 1999 Champions League final to secure a treble.

“You forget how important it is to wear the shirt of Manchester United,” Sheringham added.

“It is a charity match, but always try to win. Or at least get a draw, and we were trying to finish.

“It is one of the top when you wear the shirt of Manchester United, even though you are 46, that mentality is always there.”

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