Bernstein backs Hodgson

I think he's been an excellent appointment, says FA chairman

Bernstein looks for improvement

David Bernstein: Believes Roy Hodgson has already proven to be an excellent appointment

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Football Association chairman David Bernstein is standing by the decision to appoint Roy Hodgson despite Sunday's Euro 2012 exit.

England were outplayed in their goalless draw with Italy in Kiev before losing 4-2 on penalties to go out at the quarter-final stage.

But Bernstein is happy with the job Hodgson has done since being named as Fabio Capello's successor last month.

"I stand by everything we've done, particularly the appointment of Roy Hodgson," he told Sky Sports News.

"I think he's been an excellent appointment. I think he's proven to be already to a large extent even with the disappointment of last night.

"We all knew it would take time and I think this tournament will prove a great learning process for him.

"It was a very important tournament in its own right but also a great learning process.

"He'll go away with a great knowledge of the players, seeing them under pressure, and that will stand us in good stead going forward."

Issues

The defeat to Italy was a painful experience for England as they were starved of the ball throughout and appeared to tire as they surrendered what little possession they did have.

Bernstein acknowledges the difficulties but believes the FA are doing all they can to improve this age-old problem.

"We were very aware of these issues before we ever got here," he added.

"The opening of the national football centre, the youth development programme, we are doing all these things with the aim of improving the technical side of the game.

"We don't have enough players who are strong enough technically, we know that. Instead of having one or two, we need a number of players coming through.

"This is why the small-sided football we are working on is going to be very important so that young players are encouraged to keep the ball, to pass the ball, to work with the ball.

"And there is less emphasis, as there has been in the past, on the physicality.

"But all that is in place. I'm not just saying that now because we've been knocked out, we've been working on this for a long while.

"I think we're on the cusp of moving these things forward very fast now. Clearly, the benefit of these things won't happen tomorrow, it will take a certain amount of time."