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Jack Wilshere can provide the much needed spark and creativity for England

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England recorded a historic win against neighbours Wales in the second round of matches at the Euros, coming from a goal down to win a dramatic tie late into stoppage time.

However, what many people seem to have overlooked is the fact that the Three Lions were so close to being held to a 1-1 draw, which would have taken the side to the brink of elimination in the group stages itself.

A resolute Welsh defence managed to keep Roy Hodgson's side out for large parts of the game as a lack of concentration cost them the game in the end.

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Daniel Sturridge and Jamie Vardy were heralded as saviours for England after the duo came on as substitutes to score both goals for the Group B's big favourites. Apart from the two goals, England's game seemed rather lacklustre as the players continually failed to come up with anything fruitful.

In order to breathe some new life into England's attacking play, Hodgson needs to deploy the creative Jack Wilshere in their next game against Slovakia.

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The Arsenal man was handed a cameo appearance against Russia in the opening game, bringing in a wave of energy and excitement that was evident in the side's play after his introduction.

Hodgson made some questionable choices in the first game, one of them being the deployment of Wayne Rooney in midfield. Although the Manchester United player did not disappoint, it took the team a fair amount of time to adjust to the positional change.

Promising midfielder Dele Alli was installed alongside Rooney in midfield. However, the 20-year-old has appeared rather nervous during both of England's games, unable to express himself as he did so effortlessly with Tottenham.

England v Wales - Group B: UEFA Euro 2016

It is, therefore, surprising that Wilshere was not given the nod over one of the above two players in central midfield, a position the 24-year-old is perhaps the best suited for. Despite his young age, the midfielder is fairly experienced, having broken into Arsenal's senior team as a 16-year-old, making him one of the more experienced players in an otherwise young English team.

Wilshere's quality is undeniable and the midfielder is the closest thing to a playmaker England have. The young Gunner possesses immaculate ball control and first touch, allowing him to make runs directly into the heart of the opposition defence.

Very few English players have the ability to carry the ball on their own, which makes Wilshere a unique and valuable player who isn't being utilised properly. The midfielder's great vision and ability to make a final pass further adds to his qualities.

England have been lacking the cutting edge in attack, with very few players eager to take risks or make runs into the 18-yard box. Wilshere can offer that extra spark required in midfield and provide a base for launching meaningful attacks.

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Rooney's immense experience makes him a crucial player in the England side, and with several striking options already available to the England manager, the United talisman has shown enough to keep his place in midfield.

In which case, Alli could be the man to be sacrificed if Hodgson does decide to bring the Arsenal midfielder into the team. Another alternative could involve picking Wilshere instead of Raheem Sterling, as the Manchester City winger being far from impressive in both the games.

The introduction of Wilshere can provide the side with much-needed creativity and penetration, attributes that have been desperately lacking in the team.

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England will be looking to seal their place in the next round with a win against Slovakia in the final game. However, the Marek Hamsik-led side are far from pushovers, having comfortably beaten Russia in their last game.

A draw against the Eastern European nation could prove to be enough for the Three Lions to clinch a spot in the next stage of the competition, but the team will need to lift their game if they are to progress beyond the first knockout round.

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Topics:
Wayne Rooney
Jack Wilshere
Euro 2016
England Football
Football
Premier League
Arsenal

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