Match Of The Midweek II: England 5-1 Croatia

Ian

Ian began writing Twohundredpercent in May 2006. He lives in Brighton. He has also written for, amongst others, Pitch Invasion, FC Business Magazine, The Score, When Saturday Comes, Stand Against Modern Football and The Football Supporter. Ian was the first winner of the Socrates Award For Not Being Dead Yet at the 2010 NOPA awards for football bloggers.

You may also like...

4 Responses

  1. Brenton says:

    Good report, save for the first bit re: the Croatian handball. That was never a penalty; the player was even trying to move his arm out of the way.

    Heskey is useful but severely limited. And I read a column about Rooney as the key to the England attack, but this performance showed that he might not be as necessary as previously thought.

  2. Steve says:

    I think Heskey puts in an incredible amount of unseen/unappreciated work, often off the ball, to give the likes of Rooney, Lampard and Gerrard more room. If there are goalscorers throughout the team, such as the above, then the target man doesn’t need to weigh in with that many goals himself – see StĂ©phane Guivarc’h for France in 1998. I think England would lose more than they’d gain by dropping Heskey, and if the physicality of a Rooney/Heskey forward-line fails in a particular match then Defoe isn’t a bad Plan B to have on the bench.

  3. Martin says:

    I couldn’t care less if Heskey fails to take either of his presentable chances as long as he helps the rest of the team to such a thumping win over such illustrious opposition (your report doesn’t give Croatia the respect their recent record and ranking is due).

    Of course I’m not getting carried away, but no other international squad is perfect either and I reckon England now have their usual 1 in 8 chance of winning a tournament.

    Capello should be very grateful to Sven for many reasons, not least not having the pressure and xenophobia of being England’s first foreign manager to have to deal with as well as all the rest of the nonsense.

  4. David Howell says:

    “Capello should be very grateful to Sven for many reasons, not least not having the pressure and xenophobia of being England’s first foreign manager to have to deal with as well as all the rest of the nonsense.”

    Very, very good point.

    Also good shout from Steve over Guivarc’h; a team with goalscoring midfielders can afford to replace an out-and-out goalscorer (Defoe) with an industrious target man (Heskey) who can occupy defenders enough to allow said goalscoring midfielders (and Rooney, who at times plays like one) time and space.

    With Argentina and Portugal as likely as not missing (now that’ll be surreal, a World Cup without the two ‘best players in the world’), and the fact this is probably going to be the coolest-weather World Cup ever, I’d be tempted to bump the chances up from 1 in 8, although we certainly shouldn’t ‘expect’ to go all the way. Betfair quote 7.4 at the time of writing, which strikes me as a tad generous.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>