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Roy Hodgson optimistic of England’s chances

England manager Roy Hodgson shouts instructions at his side. Photo: Owen Humphreys/PA Wire England manager Roy Hodgson shouts instructions at his side. Photo: Owen Humphreys/PA Wire

Friday, November 16, 2012
7:00 AM

Roy Hodgson is not going to allow one moment of genius from Zlatan Ibrahimovic to obscure a night of progress for England in Sweden.

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England were already sliding to defeat before Ibrahimovic converted an overhead kick which will feature in any montage of great goals.

That was the Paris St Germain striker’s fourth goal in Sweden’s 4-2 win, meaning he will forever be linked with the Stockholm friendly which officially opened the Friends Arena.

But for England coach Hodgson, it might just be the night that set his side on the right road to Brazil 2014.

“Despite the defeat, I take a large degree of optimism from this game,” he said.

“Strangely, I would have been more disappointed if we’d sneaked a draw but looked totally outplayed or uncomfortable.

“One or two players really took their chance and showed that in 2013 we might have a bigger squad than we once thought.”

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