Engand vs. Iceland Match Preview

Game of the Day: England vs. Iceland, Nice, 20:00

The round of 16 may have been a mixed bag so far, but there are lessons to be learned for England ahead of a potential banana skin against Iceland in Nice on Monday evening.

Teams seem to be tiring in the heat, but instead of trying to wear Iceland out over the course of the 90 minutes, Rooney et al would be best served going against the grain of the tournament to date and starting fast. If England can do something they haven’t managed so far and get an early goal, they will surely make life much easier for themselves and have a better chance of tying up the result without the need for extra time. Continue reading “Engand vs. Iceland Match Preview”

The Best of the Euros so far…

Group stage wide boys

Inverted wingers have been all the rage for a good few years now reason, but with Arjen Robben absent, Lionel Messi at Copa America and Ronaldo and Bale acting as central focal points for their respective teams, teams may need some genuine width against the mass defensive ranks that became a feature of the group stage. Continue reading “The Best of the Euros so far…”

Group B Final Round Preview

Games of the Day
Slovakia vs. England, Saint-Etienne, 20:00
Russia vs. Wales, Toulouse, 20:00

Standings
England – 4pts
Wales – 3pts
Slovakia – 3pts
Russia – 1pt

As Euro 2016 rolls into the final round of group fixtures there is both relief and sadness; it is quite the commitment to watch three live games per day and remain a functioning adult, but no 5pm game on Monday will leave an insurmountable void, filled only with local news, Home and Away and (gulp) The One Show. Then there is the entire lack of live games on Thursday and Friday; it’s almost like there is something more important than football happening instead? Continue reading “Group B Final Round Preview”

Is England vs. Wales a must win game for Roy Hodgson?

Game of the Day: England vs Wales, Lens, 14:00

Two games left. Three teams qualify from the group. It sounds easy enough? But after Slovakia’s defeat of Russia yesterday, has England’s game against Wales become ‘must win’?

Slovakia’s 2-1 victory over Russia on Wednesday really has changed the complexion of Group B. If England fail to beat Gareth Bale and co in Lens, England will see themselves at best in third place going into the final round of games and whilst a win against Slovakia will basically guarantee qualification, a third place finish will see possibly a round of 16 tie against potentially the likes of France or even Spain. Such an outcome will be an unmitigated disaster of a campaign for Roy and Wayne as this is a group they should so easily of dominated. Continue reading “Is England vs. Wales a must win game for Roy Hodgson?”

It’s a box office slot as England kick-off Euro campaign

Game of the Day: England vs. Russia, Marseille, 20:00

You can be unbeaten in 32 games but if they don’t mean anything then what’s the point. England have had a lovely little run of results but now it’s time to bring your game faces, switch on the style and for Roy Hodgson, continue this positive upwards trend we find England on at the moment.

Normally England go into a tournament (at least since the first real tournament I remember – France ’98) with a burden, an expectation that we will put any side we play to the sword as we prove once and for all that we are the best at this fine game. It never happens. Especially in 2008 where England didn’t even get to the bit of the tournament where you win the trophy.

Yet Euro 2016 seems different. Firstly, no one really thinks that we are going to win the thing and secondly, England actually have quite a good squad. So what better way to ramp up tournament expectations than England playing at 20.00 on a Saturday night? It’s prime time baby! Continue reading “It’s a box office slot as England kick-off Euro campaign”

Reaction: England’s Squad for Euro 2016

Anger. England’s squad announcement left me with bizarre sensation of anger as the list was read out on Sky Sports News just past 11am on this fine Monday morning. I wasn’t expect such a feeling but it was when Andros Townsend and more inexplicable Fabien Delph’s name was read out amongst the other 24 France hopefuls that proved to be my undoing.

I have relaxed now though. I have done my banking errands for the morning and feel like I can now have a look at the England squad with fresh eyes. So here it is… Continue reading “Reaction: England’s Squad for Euro 2016”

A possible Dutch headache at Wembley?

England are going to win the Euros. The odds have been slashed, the World Champions have been put to the sword and England are on the up.

This is all predicted hyperbole after England’s performance against Germany but even I must admit, the very nature of the comeback was as both surprising, as it was impressive. England throughout looked the better side and too be 2-0 down at one point was a harsh reflection on a very good performance. Continue reading “A possible Dutch headache at Wembley?”

I know I am not Roy but here is my England XI

It is timeless. It is inexhaustible. It is the great pub debate for any football fan in this country. Who should play for England?

One thing Roy has brought to the table for any such debate is a squad that doesn’t necessarily have the 7 or 8 ‘automatic’ starters like the England team of a decade ago. Perhaps the only two names who would always start (rightly or wrongly) would be Joe Hart and Wayne Rooney but even injury has dictated that come Saturday evening against Germany, it is almost anyone’s guess what Roy might send out to take down the old foe.

So here is me throwing my tuppence into the equation. I know I am not Roy but this is my England XI to take on Germany come Saturday… Continue reading “I know I am not Roy but here is my England XI”