International footy

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Sly Boots
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Re: International footy

Postby Sly Boots » Thu May 30, 2013 12:09 pm

DjchunKfunK wrote:I think last nights formation was down to the players available rather than a desire to change systems. During the qualifiers England have been playing a tweaked version of 4-3-3.

We played OK last night, but are quite clearly missing someone dynamic in midfield who has a creative spark and can link up midfield with attack. There is nothing Hodgson can really do about that as there are just not those types of players around. It is down to clubs to create more of this type of player, but we are still stuck in an age where power and strength win out over skill during player development.

Reading an article in the Guardian last week about how Germany managed to change their system in 2002, made me feel like giving up on international football as there is just no collective will to do anything similar here. There also isn't any time for an England manager to develop a team before the media gets on his back. Hodgson has to qualify for the World Cup or the media will call for him to be sacked and he will have to get out of the group or again he will call to be sacked. This is despite the fact that we don't really have a top quality striker, apart from Rooney, and are severely lacking in creativity.


Isn't that exactly what Rooney should be doing?

Sturridge is a great striker as well, I think he should be tried with Rooney behind, providing a similar service Coutinho does for Sturridge at Liverpool. Have to say, before we signed him he wasn't really on my radar at all, but seeing him up close I've been very impressed. Not just the number of goals he's scored for us, but also his overall game awareness (as seen by his assist last night) and work-rate.

I'd say that he should be England's no9, but after his ankle injury last night I actually hope he'll continue to be over-looked.
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Re: International footy

Postby DjchunKfunK » Thu May 30, 2013 1:10 pm

Rooney did drop a bit, but the midfield is still too one dimensional and with Rooney dropping all the time it leaves the other striker isolated. Wilshire is the one who normally gives the midfield the drive and plays between the lines, but you can't rely on one player to do all the creative work.

I've always liked Sturridge so glad to see him get a chance to shine.
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Re: International footy

Postby Inflammable Jim » Mon Jun 17, 2013 11:36 pm

Confederations cup has begun and it's on a nice work-friendly hour on the Beeb, so yay international football that isn't England. I've never seen a team miss so many open goals and still win 6-1. Spain against Tahiti is going to be a thing.

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Re: International footy

Postby DjchunKfunK » Tue Jun 18, 2013 4:47 pm

Inflammable Jim wrote:Confederations cup has begun and it's on a nice work-friendly hour on the Beeb, so yay international football that isn't England. I've never seen a team miss so many open goals and still win 6-1. Spain against Tahiti is going to be a thing.


Apparently the Belgium under 20 team managed to beat Tahiti recently.
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Re: International footy

Postby Sly Boots » Thu Sep 04, 2014 7:07 am

My face is tired.

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Re: International footy

Postby katarn » Thu Sep 04, 2014 8:18 am

Thought they played okay at times, could have had a couple more goals on a different day. Seen them play worse.

I dunno, for me Sturridge is still a woefully inconsistent player, Sterling is a bag of tricks but not the finished article yet and Rooney is gradually having less and less impact. Ox-Chamberlain is another sort-of-good-sometimes player. Henderson is alright, Wilshere is good but needs to be in a good team. And our defence is a bit suspect.

I mean, the whole lot could do with simply being ...better footballers. Too often there's mis-control, losing the ball, just running into players with the ball, players receiving the ball too slowly and taking too many touches before moving the ball onwards, etc. I could go on and on...

But eh, we'll see how they do in the competitive matches.

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Re: International footy

Postby Sly Boots » Thu Sep 04, 2014 9:03 am

Um, disagree I'm afraid katarn. Sterling is the finest young player this country (Jamaican heritage notwithstanding) has produced in a long time, and week-in, week-out is probably our best player. We also don't play him as a winger. Sturridge is on practically a goal a game for us, and unlike a lot of strikers who score in streaks (a lot of Suarez's coming in back-to-back hat-tricks against Norwich, for instance, or a lot of games where he got a brace, and going quite a few games without scoring), it really is per game... he often gets one, but rarely gets two. That's the definition of consistency for me. I said loads of times last season that it was so valuable having a player who could be relied on to score in more or less every game.

Henderson is our engine. He's not glamorous by any means, but we pretty much collapse when he isn't playing.

I still don't really get why the players keep getting lambasted from every quarter, when the common factor for the last couple of years has been the manager. He must be made of teflon.
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Re: International footy

Postby katarn » Thu Sep 04, 2014 9:34 am

Yeah, completely and utterly disagree with every word of that.

Oh well... :lol:

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Re: International footy

Postby DjchunKfunK » Thu Sep 04, 2014 9:42 am

I was at the game and I thought we played OK. However there was far too much tippy-tappy going on and not enough shooting. Sturridge was particularly guilty of this and was trying far too many tricks and cut-backs rather than delivering the ball. We played some neat stuff in the first half and I thought Sterling probably deserved the MOM award and I thought he did fine out on the wing. He is certainly better out there than Rooney was. On the subject of Rooney I thought we were actually more dangerous once he went off with Welbeck, Sturridge and Sterling up front, although it is tough to know whether that was more because the Norway team were tired by the end of the match.

I've always liked Sturridge and felt there was a good striker in there, but he is limited. He might be scoring regularly at league level, but he isn't as convincing at International level. Both in the World Cup and last night he had his chances, but didn't take them. That's no real knock against him, he is our best striker right now, but I don't think he is the kind of striker that will win you the big games.

Overall I think we are still a bit suspect defensively and Hart nearly made a big howler at one point. I don't really see a problem with Hodgson, like most managers he makes the odd strange decision, but he picked the best players he could last night and he is giving new and young players a chance. At the end of the day we are not a great team right now. We have a lot of good players, but no world class players. You can only get so far with this type of team, in the end we will always lack that bit of quality.

We just don't have the system to produce the type of players you need to win things at an International level. This may come in time if people like Trevor Brooking can get their ideas to peculate down to the grass roots. However you will always be fighting against the Premier League and everyone's desire to be in it. So teams will always go for short term success over developing and growing a team. Money talks in English football more than any other country in the world. It might give us the best league in the world, but it gives us an average national team. Maybe it is time for us to decide which one we want, because I don't think we are going to ever have both.

EDIT: On the subject of strange decisions managers make, Stones at RB. You could tell he wasn't comfortable going forward and at times we had loads of space on the right wing. I don't quite understand why we didn't have an orthodox RB playing last night. Even Chambers would have been a better bet there than Stones.
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Re: International footy

Postby Sly Boots » Thu Sep 04, 2014 9:45 am

Sturridge... 21 goals from 29 league games last season. No pens, no free kicks and never scored more than once in a game I can remember. Did all this while playing second-fiddle to Suarez.

Sterling... 9 league goals having only become a regular last November/December, aged 19. Played predominantly as the tip of the midfield diamond that saw us go on a run of wins that nearly won the title. Our top scorer so far this season, ran the game at WHL.

Our run of wins ended the second Henderson was suspended, covers every blade of grass every match, true box to box midfielder, links our defence with our midfield and our midfield with our attack. Saw a stat that he ran further than any other outfield player in the league.

Meanwhile, Hodgson predicts we'll probably be dominated by Switzerland, is untouchable.

Rooney and Hodgson are the biggest problems with this England team.


@ Dj... Hodgson doing all he can, working with limited players? Switzerland are currently the 8th placed team, we're 20th. Are Switzerland producing players more than twice as good as ours?

We've had this discussion a million times, and I've seen nothing to persuade me to change my position - Hodgson is tactically a dinosaur, overly cautious, a negative personality that sucks the life out of footballers, and blames everyone and everything but himself (new favourite is him saying the reason why attendances for England matches are low, and will remain so, is because of the quality of opposition. Genius). His greatest achievement is getting the English public so used to losing and boring football that everyone believes that is just the way it is and nothing can be done about it.

Ire not directed at you or katarn in any way. Roy Hodgson just makes me want to punch myself unconscious.
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Re: International footy

Postby DjchunKfunK » Thu Sep 04, 2014 9:57 am

Like I said I don't doubt Sturridges performance in the league, its at the top international level and also maybe CL level where I think he is short. Also lets not get too carried away over last season. You have to factor Suarez into the performance of your team. This season although you walked over Spurs, you also got worked over by City. If Sturridge can produce another season like the last without Suarez than I would say he might be able to be a top tier striker at international level, but I am yet to be convinced.
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Re: International footy

Postby katarn » Thu Sep 04, 2014 10:02 am

That's fine Sly, again I simply disagree with all of that. I really do think England have little or no depth and, bar a few players who do well scampering around in the PL, just don't have the top skills all round for top international football.

And I feel it's a fair opinion when you actually study the poor ball-control, passing and decision-making from the majority of the players in an England shirt. I don't really subscribe to the notion of Hodgson magically reducing player's ball skills when on England duty.

Cappello was having the exact same problems.

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Re: International footy

Postby Sly Boots » Thu Sep 04, 2014 10:05 am

We didn't get worked over by City, more than matched them for over an hour, Jovetic was utterly clinical and took both half-chances that came his way. Our defence did shit the bed for the Aguero goal though.

Pretty excited to see Sturridge against European elite, agree that he hasn't yet really been tested at that level.

Internationally, you will probably find what we have found at times, he works very well with strikers he has faith in (see partnership with Suarez), not so well with ones he doesn't. I think with England he's also going through the same thing he went through with Chelsea - feeling like he had to prove himself to justify/keep his place, and ending up trying to do too much or go it alone (thus appearing selfish). He had a bit of that against Spurs if I'm honest, think he just needs a goal and he'll be off again.


@ katarn - that excuse only works if the players exhibit the same at club level. For me, many of them don't (some do). That Milner clip I posted, for example. He's not the most technically blessed player, but when was the last time you saw him flub like that in City colours? With the ball control issue, I think it's the stick they get from supporters whenever they pull on an England shirt that saps the confidence from them and makes it a chore rather than a pleasure to represent their country. That notion (not enjoying playing for England) has come out from players a few times in recent years.

They hated playing for Capello too.
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Re: International footy

Postby Sly Boots » Thu Sep 04, 2014 10:09 am

Anyway, Dj, what do you make of the Welbeck signing?
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Re: International footy

Postby katarn » Thu Sep 04, 2014 10:34 am

Sly Boots wrote:@ katarn - that excuse only works if the players exhibit the same at club level. For me, many of them don't (some do). With the ball control issue, I think it's the stick they get from supporters whenever they pull on an England shirt that saps the confidence from them and makes it a chore rather than a pleasure to represent their country. That notion (not enjoying playing for England) has come out from players a few times in recent years.

They hated playing for Capello too.

I dunno, the PL is a high-paced end-to-end exchange of possession. You lose possession, you'll get it back a few seconds later anyway. I often see the ball pinging off English players in PL matches like pinball, but a lot of the time there's bags of space to run into and we all end up remembering the bits that worked out.

It's very difficult to use it as a marker I find. I think Sturridge/Sterling it's more about their decision making. In a few years they may well become the players you currently rate them as, I certainly hope they do for England's sake.

Most England players individually don't look that great when exposed at international level. The need to use skills in a concise way and make key moments count is more important. Occasionally they can still look quite good against opposition a couple notches below the best, because they do have power, pace and some talent upfront to cause teams problems (as long as it's a reasonably open match).

Against Italy for example they looked pretty neat at times when they were really using their pace, plus Italy were surprisingly open at the back that day. But the circumstances have to be just right. They're a limited group of players in many ways.

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