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BBC leaks PM from Savage to Suarez - http://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/0/football/23703265
Admittedly only made a contest due to Hart and Cahill each having brainfarts, but an entertaining night. Really impressed with Welbeck, it's completely beyond me why most United fans dislike him so much, think i'd say he's been England's best player over the last year or so.
Rooney and Wilshere clearly weren't match fit, and it's always a bit predictable when Gerrard's pulling to/trying to pull the strings in midfield, but thought Cleverly did quite well, too, and Lampard coming on really changed the game.
Really chuffed for Lambert. Nice to see a player so proud to get a cap for his country. Hopefully the feelgood factor about his inclusion in the squad will remain, but some of the snobbiness about it will stop, the stats prove he's in there on merit and it really shouldn't matter who selected players play for.
Only caught the second half but very enjoyable. Was over the moon for Lambert, impressed with Wellbeck and glad to see Frank get on pitch, even if he needs a haircut.
Anyone who thinks we're worse under Hodgson is an idiot in my eyes. Our one touch passing and movement are so much better than we've managed in the past ten years. Our defences desire to ping it around like that at the back though is going to backfire one day soon...
I know loads of fans who think we should get rid of him this summer, which is crazy if you ask me. Has a lot of attributes it's impossible to learn - strength, height, pace, stamina - and works hard at his game, even if he can't finish for shit yet. He's only 22, and still has the potential to be a quality player imo.
Benteke and Lukaku smashed home a shed load of goals last year playing in worse teams relying on their physical attributes. Think Welbeck gets a bit of an easy ride from Utd fans clearly got talents but at the moment he should be better than he is.
Bale, for example, was the same age as Welbs when he started to really find some form. I wouldn't consider him a late bloomer yet. He's already good enough to play for most teams in the league, all he really needs to do is to gain some confidence in front of goal, and he'll be a great player. He's proved he's got the technique when he wants, he works hard... it might not come, but it *should* do.
If he knocks in as few as last season though... they could well call time on him. Which would be a shame.
Utd would try and sign him?
If we had an opening for a versatile fourth place striker... maybe? Hard to compare as he wouldn't be an England international, would have got more minutes, probably scored more goals...
Answer: Stupid question really.
Kills me to see Utd fans slagging him off, England fans less so because they see him less and he's the absolute opposite of a highlights player.
If/when he gets some composure he's gonna be special.
Hugely frustrating player to watch.
Beat Russia, draw to Portugal. Also draw to Azerbaijan and Luxembourg.
I don't have a lot to add to this thread with regard stand out performances/tactics/strategy etc etc but i enjoyed it nonetheless!
I do recall liking englands strip, does that make me a bad Scostman?!
They look so much better. well done nike.
Regardless of the fact that it shafted us completely (we were already looking as if we were completely on the back foot by that point, but after it we just packed up and went home) it was so beautifully exercised, so deserving, and to think that on what is effectively your first touch in your first cap you could score a goal like that is bloody marvelous. And his face! It was hard not tob be pleased for him, even through gritted teeth.
Rab Florence: Kenny Miller! A face like a haunted hoose, but what a goal.
(big freckly hun basturt). <--- valiant effort
it would never have come near to happening if england's midfield had been doing its job even 50% well.)
i would never have happened had it not been for several drinks!
'Kenny Miller plays football like a slapped wasp'
scored in an England shirt. Did Beattie ever make the national team? Was Shearer in the England squad when he was with us?
Remember watching him deputise for Shearer at Wembley against Italy. He definitely didn't score that night, just stood there looking miserable and watching various hoofs from the back sail over his head, but he must have nabbed a goal at some point before Hoddle sacked him off
1992 vs France
the year before I started following football. Congratulation Ricky Lambert, 22 years later!
It was his 'shot' that Higuita scorpioned, so he at least came pretty close
So far this morning I've got that, Le Tiss and the Germany score wrong. Fuck international football, let me know when we're back to Arsenal being shit at transfers.
(I don't think).
pretty sure it's Shearer '92. Beattie, Le Tiss and Phillips were all goalless for England
Could be a pretty good signing for them, not sure him and Berba work as a pairing though.
Lost me £30.
Switzerland beating Brazil did for me. Thanks Dani Alves.
Was probably a better experience for the players as well than most friendlies - a good advert for bringing it back on an annual basis.
Thought Scotland started really strongly, had the better opening 25 mins but then England came back into it. By the last 15 mins Scotland were barely there.
Defensive mistakes all round - for both of Scotland's goals, but woefully defended set-pieces cost Scotland 2 goals as well, along with being down to 10 men for Theo's goal (not that I think we'd have stopped that with 11, but still).
Can't help but be disappointed with the result after being ahead twice, but a fair result and pleased with the performance in general.
because if he hadn't, his late misses would have been enough to shatter any striker's confidence.
this Brek Shea photo came to my attention yesterday
I don't watch them much, but last night adds to what seemed like two good games against Brazil recently, plus that 2-4 against Sweden with the Ibra goalazo.
There aren't all that many genuinely likeable people around in professional football, great to see that look of proper boyhood dreams stuff when he scored. He's surely got a chance at going to the world cup if he plays well, right? I mean, he's better than Carroll and you'd think one target man will be included
Too sunny outside still. Watched the first 25 mins and then got bored and walked out
Sneijder snubbed. Verhaegh makes debut. KJH replaces subdued RVP. Goals by Ronaldo and Strootman.
Friendlies are meaningless, obviously.
This doesn't look real:
Fellaini Height: 6ft4
I think an awful lot of the match's good things are down to the fact that, despite it being a friendly, this was clearly the most important game that virtually all the Scottish players will play this season, so good on them for making an effort.
no one has gone AAAAAHHHHHHH!!!!!!!!!!!!!! you lost! to all the scots on here.
AAAHHHHHHHHH!!!!!!!!!!! YOU LOST!!
Compared to the average Scottish fan.
It's hard to get that excited over the result if you're south of the border.
We can't take the moral high ground any more, we're as shit as they are.
puts England's 'crapness' into perspective.
relatively speaking, England's underachievement has been much worse.
though 2006-2011 was probably their worst period since then.
Anyway it's not really underachivement as such from England as aside from a few years in the late 60s, they've always been at that same level. Is is underachievement when you've never really achieved to start with?
exactly what they've deserved.
But the England/Scotland rivalry means so much more to the Scots than it does the English. It's their fiercest rivalry. It's certainly not England's (Germany, Argentina and probably France would come higher in football).
Being Scottish still means something. Being English doesn't.
Also, things might be different if they had a soulless cashcow of a league where 70% of the players were from abroad.
because of national pride as well as footballing reasons. It's a bit like when Man Utd and Liverpool considered each other their fiercest rivals, rather than Man City and Everton, respectfully.
Not sure what you mean with the second point - that if Scottish club teams were less 'Scottish' and more successful in Europe then support for the nation team would wane? I dunno, the Scottish league is uncompetitive and until Rangers' fall, the big two were dominated by players from abroad.
I don't know about Argentina, but isn't it true that the England vs Germany rivalry matters a lot more to the English, while the Germans care more about the Dutch? This kind of thing happens all over the place.
In non-football terms it's England.
I think Germany view England with a bit of pity more than anything, and as a bit of a gimme in major tournaments. I think it's similar to how England view Scotland. Or would do, if the latter could get to major tournaments.
Are mainly an occasion for supporters of lower league teams to be able to see and support top tier football once in a while.
I couldn't be arsed with it before I sat down and watched it, now I feel it's a friendly we should play more often. The fact Scotland do give a shit about it clearly does have an effect on how both the England players and fans approach it. As long as someone like Strachan's in charge we'll get an entertaining game out of it, which is more than what we would have got if we'd played say Bulgaria last night instead.
Mesut Ozil (Real Madrid) to Man Utd
Samuel Eto'o (Anzhi Makhachakla) to Man Utd
Martin Demichelis (Atletico Madrid) to Man City
Aly Cissokho (Valencia) to Sunderland
Thomas Ince (Blackpool) to Spurs
Andros Townsend (Spurs) to QPR
Junior Hoilett (QPR) to Stoke
Florian Thauvin (Lille) to Arsenal or Newcastle
Just start linking Messi to United. May as well.
and i'd argue that it's better to get as many of those games out of the way early on than to have them, say, over the final third of the season.
Ferguson's words, his mouth, though, obviously. i think he just wants people to know that he's the Man United manager. his appointment so far has been completely overshadowed firstly by Mourinho returning to Chelsea, then by their most high-profile player proving he's bigger than the club again.
Those quotes out of context make him sound utterly delusional and paranoid. If I was a player at the club I'd be worried about his stability if he seriously meant it.
Doesn't seem like his style at all though frankly, he's been making light-hearted, off-the-cuff remarks about how difficult it's been since he was appointed (which I wish he'd stop doing fwiw), this seems like another one of those to me.
Fergie taught him well at what he is best at.
his face is pinker than ever. blood pressure must be through the roof. sort it out gordon.
How do you think your team will line up this weekend and is it what you'd send out?
Jones Ferdinand Vidic Evra
Carrick Cleverley Giggs
Valencia Van Persie Welbeck
And yea, I guess so given the squad.
Zabaleta Kompany Lescott Clichy
Navas Aguero Silva
Kinda like the guy
which is equal amounts kinda nice and completely fucking scary.
Sagna Merts Koscielny Monreal
Walcott Cazorla Wilshere
Sagna Williams Koscielny Gibbs
Wilshere Bender Fabregas
Walcott Higuain Cazorla
Chambers Yoshida Lovren Shaw
Ramirez Lallana Lambert
Johnson Toure Agger Enrique
Gerrard Lucas Henderson
Aspas Sturridge Coutinho
Depressingly I think that's the best we can do.
that back four though...
Then again Zapsta used to say the same thing about Giovani Dos Santos. Every season.
Think he'll need to adapt quickly seeing as teams are going to be ready for Coutinho now and there's no Suarez for at least the first few games
Saw him bully Madrid last season.
Walker Dawson Kaboul/Vert(hopefully one of them is fit) Rose
Lennon Dembele Paulinho Sigurdsson
Depends on injuries and that but tbh not really sure
and Gustavo isn't interested in Arsenal?
This is such a cringe-worthy transfer window. My team aren't even coming out of it that badly but I'm still embarrassed and increasingly desperate for it to end.
Loads of clubs with WARCHESTS to spunk, all getting increasingly desperate to spend it.
Ramsey - INJURED
Sagna - INJURED
Arteta - INJURED
Walcott - POSSIBLY INJURED
Think we're going back to the early postwar style of having NO SUBS
Should we bring back the Home Championship? Or basically should England get involved in the Nations Cup?
Would be more enjoyable than the usual meaningless friendlies that take up the summers between major tournaments, and more proper games would give managers and players more time to get used to playing together as a team, improving quality.
Have it every non-Finals year. Rotate the host country. Play it over three weekends or something.
Think games like last night probably only work because they're pretty rare so fans and players (especially of the teams which aren't England) get up for them, make it semi-regular and they lose that edge.
From the little I've seen/heard, the Home Championship isn't exactly wildly popular and not sure the addition of England would change that much beyond maybe the first couple of years.
Wrexham v Chester on the 31st has been designated one by the police.
(Disclaimer: there has not been any trouble at these games for over 10 years)
Basically, away fans can only get into the game if they travel by official coaches from a location chosen by the police. You have to buy a voucher one per person, in advance (ballache no.1: not being able to get to the ticket office on the stated time, not being able to buy one for your Dad or bro etc) and you trade that in for a ticket whilst on the coach. Major ballache no.2 - you can't make your own way to the ground or if you live 2 minutes away you've got to get to the designated place (Chester's ground in this case, some motorway service station for Huddersfield recently) and then pay to travel back to the game's location.
When you buy your voucher you have to show photo ID and proof of residence to get a ticket. I'm not sure how this works if you're a Chester fan who lives in Wrexham. All names and addresses of people who buy vouchers will be passed on to the police (I'm still trying to find out if ID will be scanned). No-one knows what they will do with it.
It gets more sinister. North Wales police have let it be known that anyone from Chester found in Wrexham on the day of the game will be dealt with under Section 27 (of The Violent Crime Reduction Act 2006):
Section 27 legislation allows police to move someone from a specified area for a period of up to 48 hours. No offence needs to have been committed for the act to be enforced: the legislation gives police the power to move on people who they say pose a risk of alcohol-related disorder. It's important that they only have to 'believe' that there was a danger of alcohol- related disorder for it to be issued even if no-one at the time was or had been drinking. Not complying with the S27 (ie, not leaving the area) is a criminal offence and you can be arrested for not obliging. So, you're out shopping in Wrexham, not interested in the football but the police can ban you from being in the area and if you refuse, arrest you.
I'm no civil rights nut but this sounds crazy. Every fan automatically gets treated like a hooligan / criminal and the ability to just go to a footie match is ruled out for most of the fans. It encourages away fans to go in the home end which increases potential trouble but ignores the fact that most hoolie action is never at games but in the evenings in the town. It's just penalising football supporters and it's becoming more common.
Tl:dr but if you're interested:
Good article about the use of bubble matches around the country: http://www.manifestoclub.com/files/mc-bubble-match-briefing-doc-02.pdf
Football Supporters Federation - worth getting behind: http://www.fsf.org.uk/blog/view/bubbles-are-trouble-but-theyre-tough-to-stop
Very interesting Freedom Of Information emails on how clubs interact with police on 'negotiating' games to go ahead based on the Hull v Huddersfield game (no historic rivalry, no trouble, Sky want the game at 5:20pm issue): http://www.hullcityindependent.net/?page=news&news_id=1253
They're trying to minimise the risk of away fans getting in the home end by obliging Wrexham fans (other than season ticket holders, obvs) to buy tickets in person from the ground (and again having to show id/give their address (although you won't be prevented from buying one if you have a CH postcode, apparently), etc), so if you're a Wrexham fan who no longer lives locally, you'd have to make two trips (one to buy the ticket and one to the game). No thanks.
England v Scotland was very entertaining. I'm not even English but Lambert's goal was just too perfect. Welbz continued a fine run of international appearances.
Sweden v Norway was all about Zlatan. A hat trick to go with the all around 'I am Zlatan' aura. I hope he turns up in England for a couple seasons.
Serbia v Columbia. Replay was on Eurosport this morning. Fredy Gaurin 90+ min winner. Was really impressed by this young David Silva look-a-like on Serbia named Filip Djuricic. The kid has bags of technique and looked to be running things at times. Looks like Football Manager has already pegged him as one to watch so kudos Ant/Dan.
leeds - sheffield wednesday and swansea - man united are available on free-to-air tv - pick tv are showing both games.
Fuck me, what a dreadful game.
I realised it was going to be quiet when I went to one of the pubs near the stadium for my customary pre-match pint of Dark and there were more people there for the meeting of the local allotments committee than were going to the match (in hindsight the allotment committee meeting was probably more entertaining than the game).
Guessing it was at Cardiff stadium? Still glad I had the distraction of watching the England/Scotland game after watching 15 mins of yours as it looked terrible even for that 15 mins
Most of the fans were in the Ninian Stand which is opposite the Grandstand (which I assume the cameras were on as that's where the tunnel and dugouts are).
It didn't get any better after the first 15 minutes. The first shot on target (which the keeper saved easily) was at around the 55-60 minute mark iirc.
some crazy numbers from some giddy bradford fans - 2-5 million?! Obviously between 800k and 1.2 would be much more realistic for a player who scored a few goals in the lowest tier of english football. I'm not too keen myself
but i don't really think wells would want to go to bournemouth, and a ~£1.4m bid from peterborough has already been turned down.
you shouldn't believe everything you read on football-rumours.co.uk
that's the most trustworthy name for a domain I can possibly imagine
has all the attributes to be able to hold his own in it.
would be a good deal all round, if those figures are true.
van Persie (meaning concessions in several other positions - literally one of the very cheapest players for backup goalie, 5th defender, 5th midfielder and 3rd striker)?
solidness throughout (as in, say, Vorm, Mertesacker, Pienaar, Lambert in those positions)?
The winning team in the league last year didn't have him but if you're lazy, like reliability and are against taking 4pt hits each week then he could be worth it.
Probably the only striker with a guaranteed starting berth at a top 4 side so I think the outlay is just about worth it, though your team does suffer.
Most seasons of FF demonstrate you need That Player in your team if you're going to compete, and this season working out who That Player is has been made easy by the fact he's the only forward in the top three who's guaranteed most of 90 minutes week in, week out. Really where the strategy in FF is is working out a decent team with whatever's left.
it's just I always avoid the big names to have a good spread of talent and this always turns out to be a sucker move, so this year I've gone balls in
when the injuries were at their worst (imagine that) and the fans started getting more vocal about the physio team, Arsenal brought in all the bloggers like Arseblog etc, schmoozed them and gave them a guided tour of the training ground and all of the medical area. They all then started writing about how it was just bad luck that players have reoccurring injuries and that everyone in the medical team is superb.
but I know physio is much of a muchness between the big clubs- you can't afford not to have the best- and there's no way it's just bad luck, which suggests it's a training thing. All of the players we've pinched off Arse have said they're drilled differently here, but whether that's simply journalist fluff I can't say.
our injury record was nowhere near as bad, and his reputation was such that England took him on full time. His son is the physio now (at least he was last time I bothered checking), and he has overseen an awful lot of injuries. I definitely think there is something in the training, definitely, but there has also been a large number of mis-diagnosis, and generally poor management of injuries leading to a worrying amount of recurring ones. Diaby is the obvious case in point - he could just be like Kieron Dyer and perma-crocked wherever he went, and he did have a very serious injury at a young age, but if you see where his injuries occur now, poor management has to play a part.
It's Liverpool vs Stoke :(
It's like waiting all Spring for the first festival of the summer, packing yourself off to Glasto on the Wednesday, finally get to see some bands on Friday morning and there's nothing but complete dross on till about 6pm.
Luke Moore (Swansea) to Elazygspor, Blackburn, Wigan or Leicester
Angel Di Maria (Real Madrid) to Man Utd
Khalid Boulahrouz (Chelsea) to Crystal Palace
William Gallas (Spurs) to Crystal Palace
Bruno Martins Indi (Feyenoord) to West Ham
Willian (Anzhi Makhachkala) to Man Utd
Scott Sinclair (Man City) to Cardiff City
Sami Khedira (Real Madrid) to Man Utd or PSG