Sir Trevor Brooking has backed Sam Allardyce to get the best out of England's players if he is appointed as Roy Hodgson's successor.
The Football Association are searching for a new manager after Hodgson resigned in the aftermath of England's dismal Euro 2016 campaign which ended in defeat to minnows Iceland.
Sunderland boss Allardyce has become the frontrunner for the role, holding talks with the FA earlier this week, and Brooking believes he would be a good choice.
"These players are very talented technically - we even saw that in France," the former FA director of football development told The Sun. "But they were found wanting in terms of mental toughness.
"In the Iceland game, I saw players moving into positions where they could hide. It's easy to blame the man in possession - often Wayne Rooney - but there weren't passing options for him to knock the ball into.
"There's an overhead camera and I think it would be pretty damning for that game. That was the most disappointing thing for me to see.
"That's the thing about Sam - he's always made the best use of the players available.
"He got West Ham back into the top flight and made Sunderland stronger mentally and defensively.
"Combine that with the technical ability of these England players and I think you have a decent mix. The next manager has to be English and Sam is very experienced and organised."
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Wayne Rooney has issued a statement denying reports that senior England players lost faith in Roy Hodgson's judgement during Euro 2016.
In response to recent media reports, I’d like to say that is completely untrue.
"On behalf of the players, we completely supported the England manager but we understand his reasons for stepping down.
"We had absolute faith in the build-up and throughout the tournament.”
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Crocked England defender Luke Shaw could have been in the team of the tournament at Euro 2016, according to Roy Hodgson.
The 20-year-old Manchester United left-back suffered a double leg break in their Champions League defeat to PSV Eindhoven last month and has since undergone two operations.
"We were certainly punting on him being the (England) left-back and arguably looking to be the best left-back in the tournament," he said of Shaw, who currently has six senior caps.
"It is a cruel blow, particularly for him, England will survive and he will too but at that stage in your career to suffer that type of injury when you have almost had a year of not playing is heart-breaking and we feel for him - and he knows how much we care."