His team beset by injuries after less than a month in charge, Roy Hodgson has conceded that England will struggle to beat France in their European Championship opener.
A trio of influential players has been ruled out of the tournament with injuries even before the team travels to its Polish base, while both warmup matches have produced unconvincing 1-0 victories over sides which failed to qualify for Euro 2012.
On top of that, Hodgson must cope without Wayne Rooney for the group matches against France and Sweden due to his suspension for kicking an opponent in the last qualifier, with the striker only available for the group stage finale against co-host Ukraine.
Meanwhile, the French, whose World Cup campaign was even more calamitous than England's, have been transformed in the last two years by Laurent Blanc.
''I have got a team in my head that can do very well against (France), whether we can beat them I don't know,'' Hodgson said. ''When you have gone 21 games unbeaten (if Fr...