Scolari: England could shine at 2014 World Cup

Luiz Felipe Scolari. Photo: PA

Luiz Felipe Scolari has tipped England to shine at next summer's World Cup.

The Brazilian of course hopes they will not, for he is the coach of the Selecao, but says he has seen enough from Roy Hodgson's men to suggest they could impress in South America.

The ex-Chelsea manager knows all about the Three Lions in major tournaments, having knocked them out of the 2002 and 2006 World Cups, as well as the 2004 European Championships.

Two of those defeats were on penalties and Scolari, now in charge of Brazil for a second time, thinks England will be even more dangerous if they can conquer their spot-kick demons.

"England are one of the teams who could shine at the World Cup," Scolari, who once came close to taking the England job, told the Guardian.

"Roy is doing a great job in bringing new players to the team and is overseeing a generational change. England have a good team and I think they are much better technically these days.

"People say I'm a specialist in defeating England but the victories with Portugal against them in Euro 2004 and in Germany in 2006 were on penalties, really tight games.

"You know how tense shoot-outs are.

"I think England are missing the confidence to take that step that finally puts them among the top four."

Scolari's experience with the English game extends to a spell in charge of Chelsea in 2008 which lasted just seven months.

The 65-year-old admits he is still scarred by his departure, but claims he would be willing to return to the Premier League one day.

"If I had to return, I would do it," he added. "Chelsea are a spectacular club and I still want them to do well.

"The supporters are amazing and even though things didn't work out I still remember how nice the fans were to me.

"I was upset by the way my departure from Chelsea happened. I wish my work at Chelsea could have lasted longer."