The England World Cup Madness Starts… Here & Over There


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.

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7 Responses

  1. Gervillian Swike says:

    Nice front page from the Sun, showing the ecstatic faces of Rooney, Gerrard and Terry, all of whom were key members of the England squad that had such a wretched tournament in 2006. England will get through the first round, course they will. What remains unproven is their ability to get past the quarter-finals. For all the plaudits given to Capello for instilling a disciplined and focussed approach into his squad, England’s record against the teams of a calibre you’d expect at the quarter-final stage is still pretty ropey. I’m not convinced that the level of improvement required to win the world cup has been reached – we’ll see.

  2. Steve says:

    While no first round game will be a walkover for England, I really can’t see them failing to qualify. It would take a monumental and sustained failure for that to happen. And while I’m not getting carried away, I can’t see Capello allowing England to go into these games unprepared.

    My fear is that the Algeria and Slovenia matches won’t be tough enough, and England will lack any real competitive momentum going into the knock-out stages. Previous World Cups have seen England qualify from ‘easy’ groups, only to fail when they are actually evenly-matched.

  3. Allan says:

    At least you are there…

    Good blog, pointing out the pitfalls in the draw. Looking beyond the group stages though, it is shaping up to be a draw where England have to win the group to get to the semi-finals.

  4. Noshow says:

    You might be interested on the expectation that some of our football writers here in New Zealand are exhibiting towards our chances next year.

    Keeping in mind that we are yet to score a single point in our all to brief short World Cup history, we are expecting to be competitive against the Italians given our 3 – 4 result in a pre Confederations Cup friendly. That was our strongest line up verse their 2nd or 3rd line up for most of the game and, it should probably be mentioned, a week later we were thrashed by Spain 5 – 0.

    We don’t know much about Paraguay other than Sante Roque Cruz used to play at Blackburn with our Captain, so likewise, we rate our chances against them and as for Slovakia, well, we’ve heard even less of them so we’re confident of picking up all three points against that lot.

    Eternal optimism, it seems, is not just confined to the mother country.

  5. ejh says:

    I thought the mother country of New Zealand was Scotland.

  6. GeorgeCross says:

    And Scotland’s mother country is England. We own you. You know it.

  7. GeorgeCross says:

    As an Englishman, the two thing that embarrasses me is some of our media, and then the knock-on affect that has on the not-so-intelligent fan believing the hype and basically getting mugged.

    Obviously on paper, with our strongest XI, playing to our maximum, we should win the group pretty comfortably. But, there are a lot of variables in what I just said. There have been many tournaments where we’ve been hyped up to the max, then didn’t produce. It’s not just the USA who can play below par against mediocre opposition. So, let us prepare and do our homework on the opposition and give them the respect that they deserve. Under Capello, I am confident that we can win the group and potentially go further than the QF. But a lot of that depends on the fitness on our few key players, game winners.

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