Sunday, 27 June 2010


Outclassed, outpaced and outplayed. England once again go crashing out of a major tournament, but this time to their worst defeat in a WC finals for nearly  50 years. To say England's performance in this tournament was dismal is an understatement. To draw against lesser teams as USA and Algeria was bad enough. To capitulate so dramatically to Germany, who alongside Argentina and Scotland, our greatest rivals was just too awful to watch. Yes, we had a contentious decision that went against us. Lampard clearly scored a goal and only Mr.Magoo the ref and his equally short-sighted linesman missed the ball clearly go over the line. However, I don't think that decision cost England the match. Here's my take on why we lost the match and the tournament.... 

1. Fabio Capello - started well and with good promise but tactically, he got it badly wrong during the finals. Firstly, he can barely speak English. I know may of the England team can't either, but it's going to hamper his management style. He picked wrong players, substituted at the wrong time, stuck to a 4-4-2 formation when clearly this needed to change during the Germany match. And all this in exchange for £6m. 

2. The Defence - clearly at odds before the finals with the John Terry and Wayne Bridge debacle, change of captaincy, Rio's injury and sticking with Upson when Dawson was the better option. 

3. Sticking with the old guard - Hansen once said 'you can't win anything with kids' and look how he was proved wrong. Germany's team today was youthful, quick and fearless. Fabio stuck with older, more experienced players and got some of his choices wrong. They looked tired and dare I say, a little lazy in their willingness to chase down the ball. Capello selected James and Green in goal when both had leaked in goals for their bottom on the prem clubs. Hart never got a look in. Sticking with Heskey and Rooney when clearly it wasn't working was too awful to watch. He ignored Dawson and instead opted for Upson whose had a crap season at West Ham. He left the young guns Walcott, Baines, Bent, Huddlestone, Jagielka at home and we were left with players devoid of any hunger or passion.  

4. Big names not stepping up to the mark - There were slight glimpses, but  Rooney, Terry, Lampard, Gerrard failed to ignite or inspire the team. As usual, we have a team of individuals who don't gel when it comes to playing for England. Who's to blame? The FA? The manager? All to a degree, but certainly the players need to shoulder responsibility. 

The answer? Could do a lot worse than bringing David Beckham into the England manager role....

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