England must improve passing, decision making: Hodgson

ALICANTE: England's passing and decision making must improve if they are to mount a serious challenge at Euro 2016, manager Roy Hodgson said after Friday's chastening 2-0 defeat to European champions Spain in a friendly.

England were comprehensively outplayed by La Roja in Alicante and Mario Gaspar's brilliant 72nd-minute volley and a clinical Santi Cazorla effort six minutes from time gave the hosts a comfortable win.

Although Hodgson was missing several key players through injury and started with captain Wayne Rooney on the bench, he would have expected the team to put up more of a fight and their 15-match unbeaten run ended with something of a whimper.

"Our passing and decision making has to be better," Hodgson told a news conference. "Spain do not give the ball away that often and even on the one or two occasions they do they are very good at recovering.

"I don't really want to criticise the players. We take the responsibility. We don't want excuses.

"Hopefully, we won't lose confidence because there's still a lot more to come from our game. We weren't always allowed to show it this evening."

England goalkeeper Joe Hart said the team has a lot of room for improvement but noted the side is relatively young and there was a solid foundation for the future.

"There is loads to improve but we have built a good basis," said Hart, who captained the side with Rooney on the bench.

"I was an old man out there today and I'm 28 years old. That is one promising thing.

"We had some chances and we were in the game but we lost and we have to dust ourselves off and perform better against France."

England are due to play another friendly against Euro 2016 hosts France in London on Tuesday but it is unclear whether the match will take place after Friday's attacks in Paris.