England pay the price against Russia for Roy Hodgson’s sense of containment

• Last-gasp equaliser followed conservative changes from England bench
• England manager must prepare to beat Wales in Lens

It was a small thing in the context of the numbing deflation that pursued England from the Bouches-du-Rhône back to sleepy Chantilly, but it still irked. Harry Kane took as many corners, seven, at Stade Vélodrome on Saturday as he had in the top flight all season for Tottenham Hotspur and for all that Roy Hodgson spoke of the forward offering “the best delivery” of any member of his squad, the sight of the striker pinging over set pieces baffled more onlookers than just Alan Shearer. “If a manager asked me to take corners, my answer would be: ‘Ask someone else to take them,’” the former England international had said. Fortunately for the incumbent, it is in Kane’s nature never to say no.

Drawn matches at the start of tournaments tend to conjure up more questions than answers, especially when a team have essentially played well for long periods only to be undone at the last. Just as their patient approach is about to be praised, an equaliser in stoppage time switches all the focus to the perceived profligacy when they were dominant.

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