With Steven Gerrard becoming only the 6th player to gain 100 caps in history for England, a sense of generational climax comes to mind when looking at the likes of the Liverpool skipper, Frank Lampard and Ashley Cole.
Many would consider the Liverpool and England skipper to be one of the countries top performers over the course of the year with strong individual performances in the Euro 2012 campaign. Yet, when one looks at his generation, and the fitness and matches played of those including Gerrard, it is hard to deny that many of those, if not all, are soon to be looking at the English setup from the outside.
With what now appears to be commonplace, Frank Lampard and Ashley Cole are all unavailable for England’s friendly against Sweden. It gives a chance for the youth of today, such as Wilfred Zaha, and those forgotten, despite resolute performances for club throughout the years, such as Everton midfielder Leon Osman.
With 17 year old Raheem Sterling making his England debut in the midfield, one has to ask is it time for the likes of Michael Carrick and Steven Gerrard to step aside for their country? This would allow the players of the future to grow and gain experience in the international scene with the hope that they can re-create the vibrancy once seen in an England with a young Michael Owen at the front.
It goes without saying, that over the years, the current England formula has not worked, with disastrous campaigns in both South Africa and Poland/Ukraine in 2010 and 2012, respectively. Roy Hodgson, the England manager, appears to have allowed the current generation their chance in the Euros, in which they failed, and it now seems like a revolution is on the way for the Three Lions, with players such as Sterling, Oxlade-Chamberlain, Caulker and Cleverley at the forefront. With time and patience, England could be one one of the great footballing nations again.
The question remains, is Roy Hodgson the right man to lead this revolution?