Sport World Cup

Sunday 21 September 2014

Roy Hodgson: We were unlucky not to win

Published 24/06/2014 | 19:50

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Costa Rica's Oscar Duarte (L) fights for the ball with England's Ross Barkley during their 2014 World Cup Group D soccer match at the Mineirao stadium in Belo Horizonte June 24, 2014.REUTERS/Murad Sezer (BRAZIL  - Tags: SOCCER SPORT WORLD CUP)
Costa Rica's Oscar Duarte (L) fights for the ball with England's Ross Barkley during their 2014 World Cup Group D soccer match at the Mineirao stadium in Belo Horizonte
England's Ben Foster saves the ball during the 2014 World Cup Group D soccer match between Costa Rica and England at the Mineirao stadium in Belo Horizonte June 24, 2014. REUTERS/Leonhard Foeger (BRAZIL  - Tags: SOCCER SPORT WORLD CUP)
England's Ben Foster saves the ball during the 2014 World Cup Group D soccer match between Costa Rica and England at the Mineirao stadium
England's Ross Barkley (left) and Adam Lallana (floor) battle for the ball with Costa Rica's Roy Miller during the FIFA World Cup, Group D match at the Estadio Mineirao, Belo Horizonte, Brazil. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: TuesdayJune 24, 2014. See PA Story SOCCER England. Photo credit should read: Mike Egerton/PA Wire. RESTRICTIONS: Editorial use only. No commercial use. No use with any unofficial 3rd party logos. No manipulation of images. No video emulation
England's Ross Barkley (left) and Adam Lallana (floor) battle for the ball with Costa Rica's Roy Miller during the FIFA World Cup, Group D match at the Estadio Mineirao, Belo Horizonte

England manager Roy Hodgson felt his side were unlucky not to bow out of the World Cup in Brazil with a victory.

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The national side's underwhelming campaign came to an end as they played out a goalless draw with Costa Rica in their final group game in Belo Horizonte.

Hodgson told ITV Sport: "We showed today what a good team we can be.

"We are so disappointed not to finish with a victory but I don't think I have asked for a much better performance.

"Apart from the first 10 or 12 minutes of the game I thought we dominated it totally.

"Unfortunately we didn't take our goal chances today. Had we taken them it would have been a comfortable victory."

Striker Daniel Sturridge missed three good chances for England and was unfortunate not to be awarded a penalty in the first half after a clash with Oscar Duarte.

Hodgson said: "We created the chances, that is important, and normally Daniel is so clinical.

"I am not that concerned. I know he will take the goal chances in the future. The important thing is to keep giving him the opportunity.

"But I have got to say I think we are really unlucky not to win this game.

"I am pleased at least to have given the fans something to cheer about it terms of our performance."

The result meant Costa Rica finished top of Group D with seven points while England, already eliminated after defeats to Italy and Uruguay, ended bottom with one.

With his side's exit already confirmed before the game, Hodgson made nine changes to his starting line-up to give other squad members an opportunity.

He said: "I thought they all did very well and I thought the whole back four was absolutely excellent.

"We restricted a team that has beaten Italy and Uruguay and topped the group, we restricted them to almost no chances.

"Ben Foster was very good behind and in midfield I thought we dominated it, we outplayed them in that area. We created goal chances.

"The only thing we didn't do is take them and that's a great disappointment."

Veteran midfielder Frank Lampard, who captained the side, also felt England should have won the match.

The 36-year-old said: "It was a difficult game to approach.

"I think we did everything we could do. We showed a bit of character, we prepared right for the last two days. Everyone knows how tough it's been.

"It wasn't vintage but we had enough chances to win the game. I think we played some good stuff, bright stuff at times, and created enough chances to win."

Lampard's future as an England player beyond the tournament has been the subject of speculation.

He was asked about the issue but said he had not yet made a decision on whether he would retire from international football.

He said: "I don't know. I really enjoyed being involved and I love playing for my country, that's obvious. I am 36 and still doing it.

"I feel fresh. If I feel I can offer something I will do but at the moment it is too soon to say."

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