Roy Keane has blamed the egos in the England camp for their failure to qualify for Euro 2008.
Keane is not one to suffer big egos
The Sunderland boss says all the blame cannot be put on sacked manager Steve McClaren, whom he knows from their days at Manchester United.
McClaren was assistant at Old Trafford during part of Keane's playing days.
"My opinion, looking in on England from the outside, is that there are too many egos involved in the England set-up and that has cost them dear," said Keane.
The lack of technique and the ability of England's players has been cited as major reason for England's poor campaign but Keane brushed off such excuses.
"Unfortunately, the manager takes the brunt of it but I do believe players have to take more responsibility, especially at that level," he said.
"When you look at the talent that the England lads have got it is really unbelievable they haven't qualified.
"When you talk about talent and technique, England have that in abundance at the moment.
"To say the likes of Wayne Rooney, Frank Lampard, Steven Gerrard and David Beckham are not technically as good as other players is wrong because they are."
Former England captain Paul Ince feels the blame lies squarely at McClaren's door.
"Some of his decision-making was wrong, especially for the massive games like against Croatia," Ince told BBC Radio 5 Live.
"He got the tactics wrong. David Beckham had to play - he's a leader and when you're playing Peter Crouch up front, it doesn't make any sense to have the best crosser in the world on the bench.
"And as good a keeper as Scott Carson is, David James has been the best in the Premier League for the last 10 years; if he's dropping Paul Robinson, he's got to play James."
Former England international and Chelsea defender Graeme Le Saux believes the way the Football Association appointed McClaren - after publicly being turned down by Luiz Felipe Scolari - has not helped his tenure.
"It's a desperate situation for the national team," Le Saux told BBC Radio 5 Live.
"The FA are the game's managers and administrators and, with the way they've handled recent events, ultimately they should be accountable.
We need a manager with authority and a real design plan of success
Ex-England international Graeme Le Saux
"The process of choosing a manager is key to how he performs in the early stages of his career.
"When McClaren took over, after it was widely reported Scolari was going to get the job and then we arrived at McClaren in the next move, it didn't make sense in terms of the qualities the two men had."
He added: "The process of choosing the next manager is absolutely crucial - we have got egg on our face as it is.
"It amazes me that the FA doesn't consult the game itself, to get feedback from the players. They tend to ignore the employees and it's important that they get this decision right.
"I think you have to choose somebody who is going to get the best out of the players.
"I know we've got time to build for the next campaign and we need a manager with authority and a real design plan of success.
"I'd look at somebody with experience someone like Scolari or Jose Mourinho. I know Jose well from his days at Chelsea so I've got my t-shirt printed now."