England's Euro 2012 expectations lower than ever as the French await

Roy Hodgson's England side will face a French team that has not lost in 21 games on Monday. Credit: REUTERS/Luke MacGregor

For those in the England squad who were part of the set up in South Africa for the World Cup, the accommodation in Krakow will come as a bit of a shock. And just maybe a pleasant one.

The differences could not be more stark. Yes, The hotel interiors are equally as luxurious but the location will provide a very new experience.

Rustenburg was like a 5 star prison, in the middle of nowhere. Here, they are right amongst it, their hotel front door less than a minutes walk from the old market square in Poland's second city.

It's busy, bustling and is lined with bars, cafes and restaurants. In the roads leading off the square there is plenty of high class shopping to tempt these young millionaires.

In South Africa they were so cut off, boredom became a disruptive and divisive problem. In Krakow at least that will not be an issue.

And if their surroundings are different, so too are expectations. I can't remember a tournament when so little has been expected of England.

That's mainly thanks to having a manager who's only a month into his reign, a host of injuries to important players and the fact that the squad's superstar isn't available until the 3rd group game.

Roy Hodgson also can't shake off questions about why, despite the loss of Gary Cahill, Rio Ferdinand has not been drafted in.

Hodgson cited football reasons for why he was left out in the first place but adding Liverpool's Martin Kelly ahead of him after Cahill's injury has tested many observer's belief in the manager's original explanation.

Questions are being asked about Roy Hodgson's decision to leave out Rio Ferdinand. Credit: REUTERS/Toby Melville

Most are convinced it is, after all, about his rift with John Terry. I expect Hodgson to be quizzed about that at length when he first raises his head above the parapet here, possibly tomorrow.

It is a distraction he could do without but to a certain extent it is of his own making, that and a bit of bad luck.

Like he doesn't have enough to worry about already with the French game just a five days away. A French team by the way who haven't lost in 21 games.