Football

Published: Saturday July 19, 2014 MYT 5:28:36 PM
Updated: Saturday July 19, 2014 MYT 5:28:36 PM

Don't copy Germany, Redknapp urges England

(Reuters) - Harry Redknapp believes England need to stop trying to emulate other international teams and focus on creating their own footballing identity, the Queens Park Rangers manager said on Friday.

England endured a terrible World Cup campaign, winning just one point from three games against Italy, Uruguay and Costa Rica to finish bottom of their group.

"I thought we were certainties to win a very poor group," Redknapp told reporters, referring to England's pool that contained three former world champions.

"We have good players and we have a good manager. Don’t ask me what happened. We’ve had lots of good players and managers since 1966 (England's only World Cup triumph)."

Germany have won many plaudits for their rebuilding process over the last 10 years which culminated in winning the World Cup with a 1-0 extra-time win against Argentina in Sunday's final.

Fans and pundits have called for England to copy their successful blueprint, but Redknapp disagrees.

"The problem is, France won the World Cup (in 1998) and we have to copy the French way," he added.

"Then we've got to copy the Spaniards and now it is the Germans and the next World Cup we'll be copying someone else.

"Let’s be ourselves. Let’s get the best out of the players and decide how we actually play the game and what is England’s style of play.

"Everybody should play the same way, down through the youth teams. We should be employing people to work with the kids who have got a philosophy of how the game should be played and want to play that way."

Redknapp was widely tipped to succeed Fabio Capello as England manager in the run-up to the European Championships in 2012, but was eventually beaten to the position by Roy Hodgson.

When asked if the Football Association had approached him for his opinion regarding England's future, Redknapp said: "Of course not, they have too many other experts. If they ask me I would tell them, maybe I can help them."

(Reporting By Tom Hayward; editing by Toby Davis)

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