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Adam Lallana: Stepping up to the plate

ANALYST
Modified 06 Feb 2014
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Lallana: What England need?

Lallana:  Is he what England needs?

Adam Lallana’s recent exploits  in the Barclays Premier League this season have made him a favorite and a talisman among the Southampton faithful. His impressive performances in the League and his versatility to either play as an attacking midfielder or a winger have earned him a spot in Roy Hodgson’s thoughts for the England probables list for the upcoming FIFA World Cup in Brazil.

After having made a dismal start to the season along with the possibility of being dropped from the national squad, Lallana found his feet in the nick of time against Swansea, netting his first goal of the season. From then on there has been no looking back for the Southampton captain. Having made a lasting impression on the fans, the Saints talisman is looking to take his recent exploits to the next level- The honor of playing for England in the upcoming World Cup. His unbelievable goal against the Hull City Tigers, where he successfully dribbled past five players to calmly slot the ball past Steve Harper speaks volumes about his determination, character and an undying hunger for the ball which he has shown throughout his career. His strong performance against Manchester United at Old Trafford also only strengthens his credentials as a player and captain.

England, who are without a doubt drawn in the group of death, face the next-to-impossible task of achieving qualification to the knockout stages, with Italy and Uruguay firm favorites to qualify from Group D. It is safe to assume that failing to qualify for the knockout stages is not an option for the Azzuri, what with their goalkeeper Gianluigi Buffon and their ever reliable talisman, Andrea Pirlo possibly playing in their last World Cup. Uruguay on the other hand will also be a hard test as Luis Suarez is in the form of his life, making goal-scoring look like child’s play along with Edinson Cavani.

Having said that, Adam Lallana might well be England’s solution to all the problems they are faced with. Going by his recent form in the Premier League, there is no doubt that Lallana will find his place in the probables list, but to make it to the World Cup squad will be entirely up to him. The 25 year old who now has a more free role in central midfield has certainly sparkled for which credit has to be given to Saints boss Mauricio Pochettino.

However, the main talking point with regard to England’s World Cup campaign is whether Lallana can fit into the England tactics and formations and still maintain the same flow. It will be up to Lallana and Roy Hodgson to work out his best position. Despite that, in terms of Barclays Premier League performances, Adam Lallana has indeed stepped up to the plate.

Published 06 Feb 2014
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