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Last Updated: Wednesday, 9 February, 2005, 22:16 GMT
England boss defends Johnson role
Andy Johnson
Sven-Goran Eriksson defended his decision to play Andy Johnson out of position in the Crystal Palace striker's England debut.

England coach Eriksson brought the 24-year-old on after an hour and then handed an unfamiliar role on the right flank in the 0-0 draw.

Eriksson said: "I know he's better in the centre, but we decided to stick with the system we started with.

"He was OK. He was very happy to be picked and play his first game."

Our attitude was better compared to our last game in Spain
David Beckham

Eriksson added: "I talked to him. We could have changed to 4-4-2 and taken him inside, but I preferred to stay with our formation.

"I think we played rather well. We tried a 4-3-3 system and I think it was OK. I think we had the players to play the system.

"For a friendly I thought it was good quality, we learn every time we play. It was important that we performed better than our game in Spain, which was poor."

England captain David Beckham said: "It was one of the first times we played that system, and they were a tough team to play against.

"But overall we worked hard, and our attitude was better compared to our last game in Spain.

"Overall we can take something from the game. The Dutch are comfortable on the ball, and we sat back in the first half but pushed forward in the second.

"Sometimes it suits us to play three in midfield, sometimes four, but that's up to the manager."

Interview: England coach Sven-Goran Eriksson

Interview: England captain David Beckham

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