The England football team continuously fail to meet the fans expectations but only have themselves to blame. There is an enormous amount of pressure put on the England players to win major competitions but they have let the fans down repeatedly. Pressure is not an excuse, every nation has huge amounts of expectation from the fans and rightly so. Why should the England team be treated any different to the likes of Spain, Italy, Brazil etc.
Expectation can be very daunting especially on the international stage. Young players find it more difficult to deal with pressure than some of the more established players. The England football team can be criticised for bringing players in to the first team too early. Players should be given more time to play for the England youth teams so they can adapt and cope with the expectations of playing on the international stage.
If players are given more time in the youth teams they are more likely to become better competitors when they play for the first team later on. Young players are thrown in to the deep end without much experience and expected to perform at the highest level. This is unfair both on the players and the fans. When young players are selected they often spend the majority of their time on the bench. These players should not be in the first team, they should be playing regularly for the youth teams where they will improve and adapt to international football.
It's very unfair to bring young players to tournaments and not play them. Theo Walcott's premature elevation to the England first team in the 2006 World Cup was rather surprising. Walcott did not even get a kick of the ball. After the World Cup Theo Walcott struggled to get a run in the first team at Arsenal and has only become an established player last season. It begs the question that how can a player be selected for the national team if he doesn't make it in to the first team at his club? Alex Oxlade- Chamberlain is also in a similar position. He's a bright and phosphorus talent but must be given more time to play in the U-21 team.
England must nurture their players in the right way to get the best out of them. Both The Spanish and Italian national team have a fantastic youth system and it can be said they manage their young player's potential very well. They make sure their players gain the relevant experience in the junior teams before they are unveiled to the highest international stage. Italy has a record of 5 U-21 World Championships and Spain has 4. England have 2 respectively but the last time they were successful was in 1984.
If England want to be serious competitors in big competitions they must get the team selection right. A cocktail of youth and experience is the key, if the selection process carries on the way it is this will destroy hopes of glory. Giving players the right amount of time to settle on the international stage will do them a world of good. Once the players have a good feel of what is required at this level it will prepare them to put in top performances against the elite nations which will result in England winning a major competitions.