John Stones is a top defensive prospect but looked like a fish attempting to ride a bicycle at right-back during England’s 2-0 win over Switzerland.
Everton’s youngster appeared every inch the centre-back masquerading as a full-back on England’s right-hand side in Basel.
Stones defended well enough, but it was as if the halfway line was actually a tripwire he was trying to avoid at all costs during the Euro 2016 qualification triumph.
Any invitation to carry the ball into attacking areas was refused in favour of a backward or square pass, while on the opposite flank Leighton Baines’ regular forays represented an important outlet for the slimmed-down diamond midfield.
Although it’s far too early to be writing any international obituaries for the promising Toffees talent, there are plenty waiting in the wings to have a crack at Gary Neville’s old stomping ground.
Among the forerunners is Tottenham’s summer arrival from Sporting Lisbon, Eric Dier, who ironically has seamlessly switched from centre-half to right-back, chipping in with a pair of Premier League goals in the process.
In view of England’s obvious need to find the right fit, bwin’s 3/5 special bet on Dier winning a full cap before June 2015 registers a solid-looking punt.
That he possesses the versatility to play in the centre of defence only adds credence to the likelihood of Spurs’ new darling grabbing a start for Roy Hodgson’s side.
Dier’s early-season form is very encouraging for club and potentially country, however he’s likely to have a fight on his hands from a variety of right-backs plying their trade in the top flight.
Southampton’s Nathaniel Clyne is as good as any on the periphery and offers a real threat going forward as his opening-day strike at Liverpool testifies.
Clyne’s former club Crystal Palace are harbouring a burgeoning talent in the form of Joel Ward, while Liverpool’s Jon Flanagan is nearing a return from injury at Anfield and has a World Cup experience – albeit a bruising one – under his belt.
Calum Chambers is another viable option, despite his early appearances for Arsenal coming at centre-back and that’s without including regulars from before Brazil; Glen Johnson, Chris Smalling and even Phil Jones.
One thing is clear though; Stones doesn’t have the attacking minerals to play at right-back for England.