Ian Chappell believes England are heading for a 5-0 loss to the Ashes unless Joe Root is dumped as captain and replaced by an inspiring leader.
Tourists must win the remaining three matches against Australia to regain the ballot box.
But after England have passed much of the first two tests on the back foot, even a win seems unlikely.
Root scored points – albeit without scoring a first century in Australia – but came under fire for complaining his bowlers were too small in Adelaide.
Chappell, a former Australian captain, said the English skipper was misguided.
“England are not very good,” he told 7NEWS Sydney.
“Joe, really, he’s a very good drummer but he shouldn’t be a captain… because he’s not very good. I don’t see him as an inspiration.
“You look through this England team and there’s only one name there, and that’s Ben Stokes.
“You have to be able to do something that will inspire others.
“You have to ask the question, Joe, if you can see the problem (with your bowlers), why don’t you solve it?”
“I don’t see anything other than 5-0 now.”
Chappell spoke to 7NEWS after leading an ash-themed ad campaign for nude cremation, commenting on the delivery of a neighbor’s ashes.
“It was an ironic way to advertise, bring the ashes, which is very cricket,” he said.
“But it’s also a very big part of death.
“I have to rationalize death, because it’s going to happen.”
“We are here to win every test”
A ruthless Australia set their sights on Whitewash Ashes with added motivation for the World Trials Championship to keep their foot on England’s throats.
Australia can seal the Ashes with the MCG victory in Boxing Day Test, making it the eighth time in nine home series that they have won the ballot box in three tests.
England now need a miracle to make their way into the series, winless in Australia for over 4,000 days and with a history stacked against a 2-0 revival.
Australia now has its eyes on more than the Ashes, according to Marnus Labuschagne.
“With the Test Championship now, we’re here to win the Ashes, but we’re here to win every test,” said Labuschagne.
“It doesn’t matter if we win the next one, our goal is to win every test match this summer.
“For us, that’s what the Test Championship has brought.
“Not just to win this series, you are also playing for something bigger than that.”
This summer’s Ashes marks the first round of the 2021-2023 tournament for Australia, with 12 points up for grabs to win a test and the ranking determined by a percentage of points scored over those available.
The first two at the end of March 2023 will play the final later that year, at a location to be determined.
Australia narrowly missed this year’s World Trials final, with New Zealand qualifying just above them and beating India in the final.
Justin Langer’s men had some excessively high rates to blame, scoring a decisive four for falling behind in Sydney against India last summer.