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England's Winners and Losers From Their World Cup Warm-Ups

13/06/2014 11:40 BST | Updated 12/08/2014 10:59 BST

With England's first game of the tournament just days away, it's time to take a quick look back over the warm-up games.

There were a couple of big winners and a couple of unfortunate losers and the games may well have affected Roy Hodgson's selection for this Saturday.

So, who hit and who missed?

5. Glen Johnson - Winner

Johnson currently finds himself in an odd position. He's England's number one right-back, but he keeps putting out indifferent performances in his country's colours.

The Liverpool man was poor in both of the warm-up games he played, giving the ball away regularly and getting caught out of position at the back.

However, the game that he didn't play against Ecuador guaranteed him the starting position that had been in doubt.

Roy Hodgson was rumoured to be thinking about starting James Milner at right-back against Italy, thinking that he might be more reliable than Johnson defensively. He started Milner against Ecuador to test the theory and the City midfielder was responsible for conceding a goal within 10 minutes. Oops.

So despite his poor performances, Johnson comes out of the warm-ups with his position more secure than it was before them. Winner by default.

4. Raheem Sterling - Loser

Sterling was on the brink of being named in Roy Hodgson's starting XI against Italy, but now finds himself staring down the barrel of a place on the bench.

Why? One moment of brain-fade against Ecuador. Coming on just after the hour mark, the 19-year-old wanted to try and impose himself on the game. Unfortunately, that took the form of a reckless, high and all-round awful tackle on Antonio Valencia.

Sterling was sent off after the ensuing melee calmed down and was suspended for England's game against Honduras, which Hodgson seemed to use as a dress-rehearsal for Italy. The England coach said that the Liverpool winger would've played that match had he been available. Might have lost out big time.

3. Rickie Lambert - Winner

Recent Liverpool signing Lambert will have no illusions about getting a regular starting place in this team. Daniel Sturridge is streets ahead of him and Wayne Rooney is Wayne Rooney.

But after his performance against Ecuador, Lambert can afford to dream a little. Seemingly always able to find a little pocket of space to give himself time on the ball, the ex-Southampton striker continued to look at ease on the international stage.

He rounded off the performance with one of the best goals that England will score on this trip - blasting home from a tight angle with the outside of his boot after brilliant work from Ross Barkley.

2. Chris Smalling - Loser

Smalling might have considered himself lucky to be in the squad at all after a dismal season for Manchester United, with John Stones snapping at his heels for a place in England's 23 man squad.

Roy Hodgson might have made an error in selection there, as shown when Smalling took to the pitch against Ecuador.

Constantly out of position, Smalling had no idea what his team-mates or opponents were doing and seemed to be playing a completely different game to everyone else on the pitch. Don't expect to see him play in this tournament unless England have a massive injury crisis.

1. Jordan Henderson - Winner

England's midfield has fierce competition for places, but Jordan Henderson might well have done enough in the warm-ups to nail down a starting place alongside club captain Steven Gerrard in the centre of the park.

Henderson was the engine room for England's match against Honduras, covering every blade of grass as he endeavoured to win the ball back at every turn.

His defensive capabilities will be invaluable against Italy and Uruguay, as will his assured presence on the ball and accurate passing. Will be glad to have made all-but sure of his place.

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