Sport

England assistant may have revealed formation for opening game

Much like trying to win the title when you're Steven Gerrard: all it takes is one slip and you're done for.

After Roy Hodgson had erected 12 foot-high screens around England's pre-Euros training ground in Chantily in order to keep his tactics for England's opening game against Russia on Saturday a secret, it seems that assistant manager Ray Lewington (pictured above demonstrating the size of a fish that got away) may have given the game away.

While walking through the streets of the small town, located just north of Paris, Lewington was snapped by a photographer clutching a piece of paper with a list of player names on, seemingly lined up in a formation.

However - it's far from clear exactly which areas to read anything into. The Telegraph believes it shows a 'Christmas Tree' 4-3-2-1 formation (the same as used by Terry Venables in Euro '96) while The Sun suggests that it proves that Harry Kane and Jamie Vardy will start in tandem up front.

The Daily Mail goes further, agreeing with The Sun that Kane and Vardy will be the first choice pairing up front, with Sturridge and Rashford as the backups. Meanwhile Rooney will play in midfield alongside Dele Alli, with Eric Dier playing the holding role. However, Hodgson could be playing Raheem Sterling on the left in a 4-3-3, or Ross Barkley on the right. James Milner and Jack Wilshere would be the understudies.

In short, no one's entirely clear. Which begs the question - maybe this was done deliberately to try and confuse the Russians?

To be fair, it's the sort of thing James Bond would do isn't it? Take a look at the pics below and see what you think.

(Images: Rex)