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Old 11-15-2007, 09:14 PM   #211
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my midfield would be something like this

young - barry - lampard - bentley

if hargreaves was fit i'd probably have put him in instead of barry.

young and bentley are both young, quick, skilful and have good crosses on them. david beckham only offers you one of those traits. i couldn't care less if becks makes it to 100 caps, i just want england to have real wingers who will cause the opposition full backs problems all match long.

we need to be looking to the future, not reverting to old formula's which haven't worked in the past and won't work in the future.
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Old 11-16-2007, 04:00 AM   #212
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haven't worked in the past? finishing in the top eight of the world with these four men isn't a success? by english standards, it certainly is. why does england think they're the best? what have they ever done to allow them to think that save for a tournament in 66?

furthermore, that midfield only lost 1 out of 20-odd qualifiers played together and managed to win their qualifying group for the last 2 or 3 tournaments.

i'm sorry but you didn't even include gerrard in your midfield... but you DID include lampard. wasn't/isn't everyone calling for his head? granted, he's been in fine form for chelsea the past 6 or so games but your formation is DEFINITELY not what we need going into croatia if in fact that game's gonna mean anything at all.
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Old 11-16-2007, 07:58 AM   #213
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are you happy with getting the quarter finals each year then inevitably getting knocked out? i don't think england are the best but we have a set of players that could go all the way if we had a quality manager and were set up right. we were awful at last years world cup. we just about scraped past ecuador in the 2nd round. seeing a team like greece win the european championships shows what you can achieve with a little organization.

the problem is that lampard and gerrard are too individual. you need a hargreaves/barry type player in there to keep things simple and to make the tackles and track back.

reverting to this tried and tested and failed formula is tiresome.
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Old 11-16-2007, 11:31 AM   #214
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The partnership between Gerard and Barry seemed to me to make perfect sense. They played really well together and Stevie G seemed to play far more freely than anytime with Lampard. Looks like Barry won't be playing tonight but as long as he's back in the frame against Croatia I'll be happy...providing we still have something to play for of course!

Incidently, if anyone read Steven Howard's column in The Sun today I totally agree with him on the Mclaren issue. If the result 2moro night doesnt go in our favour, then he should go before the Croatia match and a stand-in for that final game should step in - someone like Trevor Brooking, one of the few respected men at the FA.
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Old 11-17-2007, 05:51 AM   #215
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Dull, meaningless game last night - the win meant nothing and we ended up paying the highest price for risking Owen, when he didnt even need to play. Fate really doesnt seem to be going in our favour, but then - we blew it at the end of the day. 0-0 with Macedonia at Old Trafford? That was just awful.

Anyway, i'll still be cheering for Israel tonight and keeping my fingers crossed - for Scotland too of course.
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Old 11-17-2007, 08:47 AM   #216
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i'm quietly confident israel might be able to get something against russia. although there's still part of me that doesn't want england to qualify just so we might be able to get a new manager who knows exactly what he's doing.

owen didn't need to play last night but mclaren played him anyway and he got injured. good forward thinking there from mclaren. talks about how the croatia game is huge and then goes and risks our best striker in a completely meaningless match. well done steve
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Old 11-17-2007, 10:35 AM   #217
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Quote:
Originally posted by 1stepcloser
are you happy with getting the quarter finals each year then inevitably getting knocked out? i don't think england are the best but we have a set of players that could go all the way if we had a quality manager and were set up right. we were awful at last years world cup. we just about scraped past ecuador in the 2nd round. seeing a team like greece win the european championships shows what you can achieve with a little organization.

the problem is that lampard and gerrard are too individual. you need a hargreaves/barry type player in there to keep things simple and to make the tackles and track back.

reverting to this tried and tested and failed formula is tiresome.
you didn't read a bloody thing i said about the "tried tested and failed formula" did you?
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Old 11-17-2007, 11:52 AM   #218
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The problem is that Mclaren simply chooses the 'individuals' and attempts to create the team around them. If you look around the pitch Arsenal don't necessarily have the strongest starting eleven for each given position but when you put them together it clicks and they compliment eachother. I don't believe for one minute that Mclaren orchestrated the Barry/Gerrard pairing which has given us more options and balance in midfield. But it is an indication that this team needs to to mix things up a little to find a formula that works and not rely on the brand names all the time.
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Old 11-17-2007, 12:01 PM   #219
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i read everything you put and if scrapping our way to the quarter finals and then inevitably losing to a better organised team constitutes success for you then fine. getting to the quarter finals and losing does not constitute succes for me.

do you think australia and new zealand were happy with getting the quarters of the rugby world cup? of course they weren't. im not saying england are the footballing equivalent of them but we've got some very good players that aren't being set up right. i just wish we could take some wisdom from greece in 2004.
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Old 11-17-2007, 02:43 PM   #220
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Unlucky Scotland. 10 mins to go and it's Israel 1-1 with Russia!!
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Old 11-17-2007, 02:55 PM   #221
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2-1 Israel!! FUCKYEAH!!
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Old 11-17-2007, 02:59 PM   #222
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They've done us a HUGE favour - only a point needed on wednesday now. We cannot fuck it up.....!!!
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Old 11-17-2007, 03:05 PM   #223
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the significance of that last minute israel goal is massive, surely we can get a point at home? also croatia have nothing to play for.

thank you israel!
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Old 11-17-2007, 05:28 PM   #224
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yeah, this is unbelievable. what a great weekend. saw the england friendly in vienna (first time i ever saw them play) and then went mental on the streets of bratislava with the rest of english/canadians when the final whistle blew on russia.

can't wait for wednesday!
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Old 11-17-2007, 05:40 PM   #225
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do canadians feel a strong affinity for the england team?
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