Jump to content
The Education Forum

England and the World Cup


John Simkin
 Share

Recommended Posts

Sven-Goran Eriksson has named Theo Walcott in his 23-man England squad for this summer's World Cup in Germany.

Walcott, 17, is one of four strikers in Eriksson's squad, along with Wayne Rooney, Michael Owen and Peter Crouch. Two of the strikers Rooney and Owen are injured and Crouch rarely scores goals.

Apparently, Arsene Wenger has recommended that Eriksson should take Walcott. Yet Wenger has been unwilling to pick him for Arsenal. When Eriksson was asked about the logic of picking two injured strikers and a player who has never played a game in the premiership, he replied it was not a logical decision but was based on “instinct”.

In the past Eriksson has made it clear he is not keen on picking people who have not had experience of the Champions League. This is why he has been reluctant to play strikers who play for small clubs like West Ham and Charlton, even though they have scored lots of goals in the premiership (Harwood and Bent). Yet here he is picking someone who has never been considered good enough to play in the premiership.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Replies 75
  • Created
  • Last Reply

Top Posters In This Topic

Eriksson and Wenger keep on about Walcott’s pace. Apparently, he is faster than Henry. Although it is true that fast players can unsettle defences, this is not always the case. If it was, the UK’s leading sprinters would be playing in the premiership.

Early this season David Bellion played for West Ham (he was on loan from Manchester United). He was amazingly fast but he could not get a place in our first team and was soon sent packing (I believe he is now playing in France).

Players like Henry are effective because they are fast and skilful. There was an interesting article in the Guardian about Walcott’s time at Southampton. It was pointed out that soon after making the first team he scored in consecutive games against Leeds, Millwall and Stoke. The goals then dried up and overall, he only scored 4 goals in 21 games in the championship. Walcott did take defenders by surprise but it did not take them long to develop a strategy to deal with him.

In his last game for Southampton was on 14th January against QPR. As Steve Lomas pointed out, Matthew Rose played him out of the game. He was denied space. As Lomas pointed out: “Not letting him turn is the key.” His coach, Dave Bassett, said that in several games, like the one against QPR, Walcott did not get a kick and had to be taken off. Bassett is another one who is amazed by Eriksson’s decision.

If a very moderate QPR defence can deal with Walcott, will he really threaten the best defenders in the world?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Hi John

Yes you are correct, David Bellion is back playing in France. Theo Walcott would appear to be a very bizarre choice from a less than stellar England manager. It is as if he is thumbing his nose at the English public and the chances of winning the World Cup. Owen's fitness will be questionable and he will be far from his best even if he plays, judging by his past performances coming back from injury. And as we have discussed, to rely on Rooney is just insane. Harwood and Bent would have been better choices. Is Vassel injured? As you will recall, I did mention that Fowler could have been a reliable goalscorer to bring in, and a guy with international experience behind him.

All my best

Chris

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Poet's corner May 4 2006

By Emma Gunby, Liverpool Echo

mcgough.jpg

LIVERPOOL poet Roger McGough has written a World Cup poem urging

England to win - for David Beckham's sons Brooklyn, Romeo and Cruz.

He also asks the team to triumph for "the ordinary man in the street".

McGough, who rose to prominence in the 1960s alongside Adrian Henri

and Brian Patten, said he hoped he would get the chance to read

Reasons For Winning to the England team.

He said: "I doubt there is anyone who doesn't want to see the World

Cup come home with the team this summer.

"I wrote Reasons For Winning to express how badly the people of England

want it and hope they might even add their own verses to the poem.

"And if Sven would like me to read it to the team - he only has to ask.."

McGough, who refused to perform at a concert during the controversial

visit of US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice to Liverpool in March,

was commissioned to write the poem by the Sky channel Artsworld.

In 1968, he published The Mersey Sound with Patten and Henri, one of

the best-selling poetry anthologies with more than one million sales.

Reasons For Winning by Roger McGough

Win it for the fans whose happiness will depend on it

Win it for Sven whose career may well end on it

Win it for the nurses and local authorities

Win it for the poor and ethnic minorities

Win it for the girl awaiting the operation

Win it for the firefighters racing back to the station

Win it for the late train and the overcrowded bus

Win it for granny who can't understand the fuss

Win it for prisoners banged up in their cells

Win it for couples in seedy motels

Win it for young mums pushing their buggies

Win it for saddoes, asbos and druggies

Win it for the dads who can't bear to lose

Win it for Brooklyn, Romeo and Cruz

Win it for young Rooneys-in-the-playground, learning new tricks

Win it for old heroes at Wembley, the class of sixty-six

Win it for the ex-pats, all the fans overseas

Win it for the viewers at home. Please.

Win it for the ordinary man in the street.

But above all, win it for yourselves

You've got the world at your feet.

Reasons for Winning (No Pressure)

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Yes you are correct, David Bellion is back playing in France. Theo Walcott would appear to be a very bizarre choice from a less than stellar England manager. It is as if he is thumbing his nose at the English public and the chances of winning the World Cup. Owen's fitness will be questionable and he will be far from his best even if he plays, judging by his past performances coming back from injury. And as we have discussed, to rely on Rooney is just insane. Harwood and Bent would have been better choices. Is Vassel injured? As you will recall, I did mention that Fowler could have been a reliable goalscorer to bring in, and a guy with international experience behind him.

Vassel is not injured but has not been in good form for Manchester City. I think Dean Ashton and Darren Bent should have both been included. Yesterday's game showed the different qualities of Ashton and Crouch. I know which one I would rather have in the team.

As you say, Owen will be far from match-fit by the time it starts. There must be a good chance that he breaks down during the early games. Then we will be playing a patched up team. Let us hope that football commentators don't start talking about how unlucky we were to have so many injuries.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 3 weeks later...

What did people think of Eriksson’s tactics last night? The decision to play Michael Owen as a lone striker makes little sense. Owen is incapable of holding it up to give time for the midfield to join him. Nor does he seem very sharp. It is clearly a major gamble to take so few strikers to Germany.

Walcott made no impression when he came on and one can see why he has never played for Arsenal’s first team.

It seems strange that Eriksson should ask Carragher to play in a position he has never played before (holding midfield). He did okay defensively but his unwillingness to play a quick pass forward slowed the team down. Hargreaves who replaced Carragher, was awful. What does Eriksson see in this player?

I cannot understand why Eriksson did not play Michael Carrick in this position. He has done well for Spurs in this position this year. He is one of the most decisive passers in the premiership. It is true that his tackling was not great on Saturday but surely he deserves another chance. Especially as he created so many chances for the forwards on Saturday. It was not his fault that the strikers did not take those chances.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

What did people think of Eriksson’s tactics last night? The decision to play Michael Owen as a lone striker makes little sense. Owen is incapable of holding it up to give time for the midfield to join him. Nor does he seem very sharp. It is clearly a major gamble to take so few strikers to Germany.

Walcott made no impression when he came on and one can see why he has never played for Arsenal’s first team.

It seems strange that Eriksson should ask Carragher to play in a position he has never played before (holding midfield). He did okay defensively but his unwillingness to play a quick pass forward slowed the team down. Hargreaves who replaced Carragher, was awful. What does Eriksson see in this player?

I cannot understand why Eriksson did not play Michael Carrick in this position. He has done well for Spurs in this position this year. He is one of the most decisive passers in the premiership. It is true that his tackling was not great on Saturday but surely he deserves another chance. Especially as he created so many chances for the forwards on Saturday. It was not his fault that the strikers did not take those chances.

I'm no expert on Engish soccer players--or Australian soccer players for that matter--but I've never understood why Erikssen is still manager after the 2002 World Cup quarter final against Brazil. Michael Owen scores a goal putting England ahead and appears to be giving the Brazilian defence trouble. So what does Erikssen do? Yanks him off the field. Brazil eventually win 2-1. What a genius.

BTW, what probability do you give Rooney of being fully fit?

Edited by Mark Stapleton
Link to comment
Share on other sites

.

BTW, what probability do you give Rooney of being fully fit?

None.

Peter Crouch should play.

Also John Simkin, (a self confessed lifelong admirer of Crouch), should be encouraged to participate in that robotic dance every time Crouch scores :lol:

http://football.guardian.co.uk/comment/sto...1787348,00.html

Eriksson gets a lot of stick in this country but this is often little more than thinly disguised xenophobia.

His replacement is an infinitely worse manager but bless him he's English :rolleyes:

Link to comment
Share on other sites

.

BTW, what probability do you give Rooney of being fully fit?

None.

Peter Crouch should play.

Also John Simkin, (a self confessed lifelong admirer of Crouch), should be encouraged to participate in that robotic dance every time Crouch scores :lol:

http://football.guardian.co.uk/comment/sto...1787348,00.html

Eriksson gets a lot of stick in this country but this is often little more than thinly disguised xenophobia.

His replacement is an infinitely worse manager but bless him he's English :rolleyes:

He deserves stick for such a tactical blunder in such an important game. England could have easily gone on to win it if they had got past Brazil in 2002. It wouldn't matter whether his name is Sven-Goran Erikssen or John Smith. He should have been given the hook, IMO.

Rooney's got no chance, eh? Someone told me he was 100% certain of starting. I'll go with you. This leads me to believe England are only an outside chance now.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Rooney's got no chance, eh? Someone told me he was 100% certain of starting. I'll go with you. This leads me to believe England are only an outside chance now.

I think it would be wise not to take Rooney. It is unlikely that he will be physically fit and it is impossible that he will be match fit.

Eriksson has been a good manager for England.

In the match you cite it was very clear that a tired England team was outplayed in the second half.

Eriksson has of couse been effectively sacked recently in favour of an Anglo Saxon mediocrity :rolleyes:

Link to comment
Share on other sites

The last two warm up games have told us that Owen cannot play as a lone striker and the Hargreaves cannot play as the holding midfielder. It now seems that Eriksson will now play Crouch with Owen. It worked on Saturday against the worse international side I have ever seen. Will it work in the World Cup? Unlikely, but his selection policy means that we have no other realistic option.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Have you not seen Wales play?

Wales have several players who play in the premiership (including three from West Ham and the great Ryan Griggs). That was not the case on Saturday. They did not have one players who plays in the first team of the premiership or any other top league. And boy did it show.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Please sign in to comment

You will be able to leave a comment after signing in



Sign In Now
 Share

×
×
  • Create New...