BBC Sport's Alan Hansen believes England have plenty to smile about after
their draw against Holland in Amsterdam.
England's performance offered plenty of plusses and minuses for Sven-Goran
England had the better of the chances, though not the better of the play.
They were great going forward and, with Owen involved as well, will look
But defensively there is still cause for concern. Two of the three debutants
did really well and these were ideal conditions in which to assess the new
boys.. You don't want to make it easy for them. You want it to be hard and
playing away against a side of Holland's quality was ideal.
Darius Vassell and Wayne Bridge did very well, though Michael Ricketts
probably got caught out a bit.
Vassell started quite nervously but came on well. He had pace, looked lively
and had a great hit for the goal. It was an eight or nine out of 10 and Sven
will be forced to play him again.
Vassell was a tad nervous early on and you thought that he might not
recover. But, boy, did he recover.
Wayne Bridge looked very comfortable. He started well and showed real
composure. He got a great cross in early on and that settled him into a very
competent 45 minutes. At the highest level, you have to be comfortable in
possession and he clearly is. He is definitely worthy of another go.
With Ricketts, expectations were high because he has done special things in
His priority was to hold the ball, but he gave it away time and time again.
I believe Ricketts could be extra special, but the World Cup has come a bit
too early for him.
Our midfield trio of Beckham, Gerrard and Scholes was excellent. The only
problem is that you don't have a natural holding player among them. They all
want to go forward and that can leave you weak at the back. I'm not so sure
the sytem worked and, if one player dominated, it was Patrick Kluivert.
But the object was to look at the new players and Vassell really caught the