Raheem Sterling set to start for England against Russia

Sterling could be chosen ahead of Jamie Vardy when England line up for Euro 2016 opener against Russia

Raheem Sterling set to start for England against Russia

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June 10th, 2016

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Raheem Sterling made England’s starting XI against Italy two years ago in the 2014 World Cup opener and Roy Hodgson looks set to deploy the Manchester City winger against Russia.

It means that Jamie Vardy will start off on the bench despite clamour for the Leicester forward to start, with Hodgson looking to employ an attacking formation that he hopes will get Russia on the back foot.

Eric Dier and Dele Alli are shoo-ins when it comes to the midfield area, with Adam Lallana pressing for the other place in midfield, while Wayne Rooney will push further forward to support Sterling and Harry Kane.

The Russia coach is certainly wary of Wayne Rooney, with Leonid Slutsky admitting that the player’s role has changed over time.

“He has changed his style and is not the player that he was,” said Slutsky. “It reminds me of Vágner Love when he came to CSKA Moscow in 2004.

“Back then he was a pure striker because of his speed, his runs, and he scored lots of goals. He was brilliant in the front line. Now Vágner Love is very different. He organises, he plays passes. It would be unfair to say that Rooney is worse than before but he is very different.”

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