Would You Buy A Ticket For An England Friendly?

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I find it absolutely amazing that the Match tonight is a sell out. The biggest sell out is by the FA who charge huge prices for non events leaving the people the customers bought the tickets to see at home on the sofa.  Perhaps the people that bought the tickets are expecting to be let down now as it happens so consistently.  I think even diehard  football fans find these games boring so ‘well done’ to whoever sold all the tickets and ‘get your bumps’ felt to those who bought them.

I haven’t found these games in the least bit interesting since Sven turned them to farce several years ago. It just seems a pointless exercise when there is proper competitive football available to watch and this rubbish is just in the way.
Apart from exploiting their own customers the FA also insult our opponents by playing a reserve side against them. How would the FA feel if we went to play in Ghana and they didn’t put their best team out. I don’t know where we get this arrogance from as we consistently fail at International football.
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It is an inconsistent arrogance too because we always think that we need a foreign manager despite making two appalling appointments. Anybody that makes somebody the highest paid manager in the world that can’t speak the language is incredibly stupid. The reality is that those players could easily have got the same results with a dustman as manager. Preferably an English dustman please FA if you read this and think it is a masterplan. Capello out – Dave the Dustman in !
I don’t see the point of international football anymore when all the allegiances are bought rather than native. Players play for any old country that asks it seems and managers are just mercenaries.
Personally, I wouldn’t be vaguely interested in spending my money or wasting anybody elses on watching the non events that England friendlies have become. I won’t even watch it on TV because it is a pointless match. Roll on the weekend and some proper football.

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England Friendlies – What A Yawn

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I lost the will to live during England friendlies years ago when Sven was allowed to turn them into very expensive  kickabouts. I am sure most of the country are disinterested in England V France this week.  Why is that ?

For me any game where the result is unimportant to the participants is a waste of time.  If the players are going to be swapped about so that the game loses its way it becomes dull. If the England team is managed by somebody that is not English or contains adopted players the point of England v Them Foreigners is lost because we are not all English. In this case the bloke that has picked the team must have pulled the players out of a hat or using little Lottery style balls because there are some strange selections  in the squad.
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The reporters and commentators will still mention Wayne Rooney 1000 times even though he isn’t playing and it will all be a hideous bore.

If you have paid good money to watch this game you should go and get your bumps felt immediately.

The weekend can’t come soon enough . Lets have some proper football

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Would a draw be a good result in Switzerland?

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Tomorrow nights game in Switzerland is a more difficult one than many imagine.  Switzerland are a highly organised side that are proficient in not  losing games rather than winning games. Although they did beat the eventual World Cup Winners in a group game in South Africa.  They never looked in any danger of losing that game and will prove stubborn opponents.

With Rooney a doubt England’s  ability to unlock the Swiss defence will be in jeopardy.  There is a lack of imagination in the starting eleven with perhaps Adam Johnson a player who should be used to add the unpredictability that was sadly missing in South Africa.

It is difficult to say whether he should play ahead of the speed of Walcott or the crossing ability of Milner.  It might be Johnson that replaces Rooney if that proves necessary and the formation be changed to a 4 5 1 . This seems unlikely though as Defoe isn’t usually used as a lone striker.
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This will be a proper test of Capello ’s tactical ability. Making chances will be difficult so he will need to be inventive.  He might decide that an away draw against the second best team in the group is a good result and I think it probably is if we can win at home.

If I were betting I would bet on a 0 – 0 which won’t do much for Capello’s popularity but will be good enough in terms of qualification.

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Paul The Psychic Octopus for England Manager

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The FA will not have missed the undoubted talent and unerring accuracy of Paul the Psychic Octopus. His football knowledge has seen no equal during this World Cup.  Despite the nation calling for patriotism to be reintroduced to our national team with the appointment of an English coach I think they may be drawn to appoint a German Octopus as the next England Manager.  They believe in employing the best man for the job above everything else. They have shown that they believe somebody that can’t speak the language is the best man for the job. They have also shown that they don’t object to England friendlies being turned to farce by another inept foreign manager . They have built a national stadium but were not that bothered about it having a decent pitch inside it. They have shown that they believe all English managers aren’t up to the job. I keep thinking they must be one step ahead of the rest of us with their ideas but I can’t quite see how.

Now of course they will have to use all their negotiating skills to get him as he will be much in demand.  They will have to offer him more than the current manager, that goes without saying.  £6 million a year is nowhere near enough for such a talented invertebrate. You have to pay top dollar if you want the best. He will also need a luxury tank in Mayfair and executive tanks at all Premier League Grounds. I am sure he has a bit of an entourage who we can make ridiculously wealthy too.  Perhaps he has a friend that we could make goalkeeping coach as they have plenty of arms. How much further would we have got in his World Cup if we had employed his selection process to pick our forward line.  He might have chosen some forwards that would get an occasional shot away! He might have chosen a team instead of ‘who is going to play with Rooney?’ I think the FA should appoint him immediately and take the lead in forward thinking management again.

Stop press :  I just found out that Paul was born in Weymouth which makes him English.  Logically that makes him even more qualified but this is the FA and they are not very big on English for England

football socks for teams

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Who should be thrown out of England set up ?

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Firstly of course Capello has to go  because he got so many things wrong , then went back on all the things he said he wouldn’t do, also crucially he isn’t English. He showed no sign of justifying the highest salary of the football managers at the World Cup. He looked like he picked the substitutions out of a hat.  So he can disappear immediately and take all of the rest of the Italian staff with him.

Secondly, John Terry can go too as he thinks he is bigger than the team and gets away with murder.  He played like a pub team centre half against Germany and really doesn’t deserve the special treatment that he receives.  He undermined the manager at a crucial stage of the World Cup and quite frankly any of the other centre backs would have performed better than he did against Germany.

Players that should never have gone to the World Cup in the first place like Jamie Carragher, Robert Green, Emile Heskey and Shaun Wright-Phillips.  Players with no England future David James and Ledley King.

Most importantly the people that appointed Capello at the FA need to go especially whoever sanctioned the change to the contract only 3 weeks ago.  These people don’t learn anything, don’t listen to the country and have nothing in mind other than money.   We need people in there that understand the principles of sport not business.  If you have a product that people can relate too the money will come naturally.  There was no clamour to appoint Sven from the public or Capello so why they feel they need to pay them ridiculous money is baffling.  These people have made our once proud nation the laughing stock of football.  How can you talk to players about pride in the shirt when we are not even proud enough to appoint one of our own as manager ?  We need to get these people out and get Englishmen in on sensible salaries not ludricous ones.

We also need to get Englishmen back into management positions in the Premier League and prioritising English boys as players to groom rather than importing them from all around the world.

Don’t forget this isn’t cricket. There is real passion for our country in football and we are in danger of diluting it.  The England cricket team may be happy to field a team of South African rejects but the football supporters are far more patriotic.  Lets get this sorted now.

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England – We will blame the soft targets as usual

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Who are we going to blame for the complete disaster that is our World Cup campaign?   The soft targets I expect if you read the national papers.  I often think they are like a cartel that picks a target and that becomes a common theme.  We know that the targets will be Capello, Upson , Heskey and the referee that missed our Lampard goal.  We also know that they will roll out rubbish like it might have been different if we took Walcott or Hargreaves. Now 4-4-2 is alien to Wayne Rooney who has probably played it in 95% of the football matches he has ever played in. He didn’t get a shot in worthy of the name in four matches for goodness sake.  The system isn’t the reason for that. We would have won if he had played up front on his own? Do me a favour. Why isn’t it as simple as Wayne Rooney played like Drain Rooney?  He couldn’t trap a bag of sand in 3 of the 4 matches.  Why is Upson the main culprit at the back when John Terry was totally, yes totally, missing from his post for all four goals ?  He was absolutely terrible. He played like the kid in the under 10s who thinks he is better than everybody else and can play where he likes.  Much as they will talk like team men both Terry and Rooney play like they think they are better than the rest and positional responsibility doesn’t apply to them.

Why don’t we have a manager that can speak our language ?  Why do the FA continue to repeat the same old mistakes of overpaying foreign mercenaries to pick players for a job which is of national pride.  The Sun headline today is ‘You have let your country down’  well it is not Capello s country and he shouldn’t be in charge.  The FA have to take a stance and bring patriotism back into football.  You wouldn’t need to offer a patriot a ridiculously expensive contract and you would have somebody interested in the country progressing.

Heskey was on a hiding to nothing and I feel sorry for him because virtually everybody thought he shouldn’t even be there let alone starting and the same on a smaller scale applies to Shaun Wright-Phillips.  Upson was always going to get caned if we lost too but in my opinion it is Rooney and Terry that let us down on the pitch the most.  Capello has also made some ridiculous decisions that left us with no goal threat and our best midfielder playing on the left wing. That failed in Portugal 2004 {six years ago] and we are still trying to make it work now.  However the biggest culprits are the FA for continuing with their non patriotic policies.  Don’t they notice that the passion of the supporters for their country? Don’t they know that even if we had won there is little merit in it if it is masterminded by somebody from an opposing nation? They are in danger of breaking the fans spirit by not applying basic sport principles to the national team.

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When will we realise Rooney isn’t Superman?

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The press who are currently crucifying Wayne Rooney should remember exactly who it was that kept telling us that Wayne Rooney could win the World Cup on his own.  The tabloids have built him up to proportions that far outweigh his ability.  His history for England shows no evidence to back up the ridiculous weight of expectation placed on the poor boys shoulders.   The evidence actually is that when the situation gets tense his brains go out the window.  He actually got sent off in the last World Cup Finals and we  ended up losing the match against Portugal and coming home.  He also decided to go and play left back  in Russia and gave away a penalty that cost us qualification to the Euro Finals. He has made big contributions to getting us knocked out of the last two tournaments.  So the expectation now should be that in a tense situation he is far more likely to do something stupid than good.   The press  and that loon Porky Parry on Talksport have added to his burden with their expectation forgetting that Sven had told us he could win the last World Cup . He didn’t even score a goal in that World Cup.

He will surely be selected as he is ‘Wayne Rooney Superstar’ but he doesn’t deserve to be on current form and his temperament is a big risk.

Crouch and Defoe is a partnership that works and would probably have been too good for Algeria.  Picking a team to play around what suits Wayne Rooney, when on the latest evidence he can’t trap a bag of sand, could yet prove foolish.

Capello would do well to underline the fact that England are not a one man team and can win matches without Rooney.  I don’t think the weight of expectation is fair on him or shows any sign of turning out to be justified.

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Fabio – Please pick Joe Cole

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Fabio Capello has made few mistakes as England manager but he did make selection errors last time. Most stupid one being I don’t think that James Milner was a sensible selection bearing in mind he had been ill all week and there were plenty of other options.  I don’t think Rob Green or Heskey should have started either but now I think it will be difficult to drop either of them for different reasons.  If he drops Green for making a mess of a simple shot then he is being needlessly harsh on the boy which can have wide wider repercussions on his career [ like Scott Carson ].  It was a horrible error but can happen to anyone and doesn’t mean it will happen again.  Heskey , who would not have even been there for me,  was one of the better players against USA.  I would still bring in Crouch for him even though it seems unfair as he played better than Rooney. I got Heskey in the sweep for first goalscorer and tried to sell it but couldnt find anyone who thought the forward could score. For that reason Crouch has got to come in. We know Rooney is not ever going to get dropped so Heskey has to go back to the bench.

Wright Phillips was a strange choice as replacement for Milner as he has been out of the City side and not showing any form. I hope Fabio Capello gives Joe Cole his chance on the left this time as he is the best we have out there and always looks likely to do something.

So I am hoping for just two changes to the starting line up being joe Cole and Crouchy in with Milner and Heskey out.

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New England Away Shirt available to pre order

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The new England away shirt is now available for pre order for delivery on March 3rd.  The away shirt is usually not only more popular than the home shirt but has been the topselling football shirt in the world on previous occasions. It is hugely popular in World Cup years.

So if you would like to be  amongst the first to be getting World Cup fever go along and preorder the new  England away shirt now.

There are quite a few variations  with short or long sleeve and various players names available.

Just click on the banner below to go to the sales page

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Brazil – England 1-0 (14.11.2009)

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Brazil – England 1-0, Brazil – England 1-0, Brazil – England 1-0, Brazil – England 1-0, Brazil – England 1-0, Brazil – England 1-0, Brazil – England 1-0, Brazil – England 1-0,

Duration : 0:7:28

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