Sleeping pills to blame for England's drowsy show in Poland?

Roy Hodgson’s side were below their best as they battled to claim a 1-1 draw in Warsaw after the match was delayed by a day after heavy rain waterlogged the pitch on Tuesday night.

Headed in: Poland’s Kamil Glik (second from right) equalises against England during Wednesday’s World Cup qualifying tie in Warsaw. Pic/AFP

This morning reports in a number of newspapers have suggested that England players used tablets to allow them to get to sleep on Tuesday night following the postponement.

There were also claims the players required caffeine pills before yesterday’s 5pm kick-off, however, the FA declined to comment when contacted by Press Association Sport today. Manchester United defender Rio Ferdinand, who has 81 England caps, rubbished suggestions that the sleeping pills may have affected the England players’ performance this morning. “What’s all the fuss with caffeine/sleeping tablets?? Players have used them for yrs before + after games without any fuss..,” he wrote on his Twitter page.

Everton skipper Phil Neville also claimed that the use of sleeping pills on the night before a match was a standard practice. He wrote: “Throughout my career players have taken sleeping pills night be4 game and caffeine tablets day of game never been a problem in media be4.”

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