Less than 50 days after being named manager, Roy Hodgson has steered England to the knockout stages of Euro 2012. It might not be exhilarating to watch but the Three Lions are getting the job done.
With Sunday's quarter-final against Italy next in the diary, England have surpassed expectations and deserve praise. Hodgson remains unbeaten as boss, including friendlies, having won four games and drawn one, and progress is undoubtedly taking place.
It is not particularly pretty but it is efficient and professional. It was never going to be anything else under Hodgson. Emphasis is on shape and discipline and confidence is building. That is why the FA appointed Hodgson over Harry Redknapp.
His success at Fulham and West Brom was built on organisation over aesthetics. That was one of the factors why he was unsuccessful at Liverpool. There was a certain expectation at Anfield to play with style. England fans simply want to win after years of disappointment.
Victory over Ukraine on Tuesday night meant England won Group D by three points. That was unthinkable at the beginning of May when the doom-mongers among media and fans were anticipating the national team would fail to qualify for Euro 2012's last eight.
That is where Hodgson deserves such credit. Had England not qualified for the quarter-finals, the 64-year-old would have been criticised from every angle. Never mind the short notice of his appointment, England's low standards and almost nationwide rock-bottom expectations, Roy would have been lambasted for not being 'Arry.
Spirit and atmosphere
Instead, Hodgson has made his mark almost immediately. Players are speaking of the combined team spirit and positive atmosphere. They appear to be taking on their manager's philosophies and even the question marks about his ability to inspire seem to have drifted following the dramatic recovery against Sweden.
Hodgson's greatest strength is picking his team based on a designed game plan which is specific to the opposition. For years, the criticism of England's 'Golden Generation' was that big-name players would simply stroll into the team.
Yes, Wayne Rooney returned straight back to the first XI after suspension against Ukraine. But he scored the winner and, despite Hodgson's previous jokes about a dressing room revolt if he did not select the 26-year-old, there is no way the Manchester United player would have started if it was not considered best for England.
Hodgson is selecting a team which he thinks can exploit opponents. Against France, he was concerned about the pace and counter-attacking so decided to pack midfield. Against Sweden, he wanted a physical presence and so selected Andy Carroll.
Italy are next in line and Hodgson will almost certainly already have a tactical plan. If England were to be eliminated by Cesare Prandelli's Azzurri, it would be a disappointment. But it will not be for lack of organisation and there should be no criticism.
Who was England's man of the match in their win over Ukraine?