MANAUS, Brazil (AP) -- Rarely has a loss provided so much optimism for England.
Even though England made a losing start to the World Cup for the first time in 28 years on Saturday, the team looked fearless and lively going forward and showed glimpses of a bright future in the 2-1 defeat to Italy.
Rather than sending out his team for a draw, Roy Hodgson was far from cautious. Hodgson knew the clamor from England was to be bold, and the coach was adventurous in the Amazon -- picking 19-year-old winger Raheem Sterling in an attack-minded lineup.
With Sterling living up to his billing, this England team was everything the 2012 version was not in the quarterfinal loss to Italy at the European Championship.