Tag Archives: England

FIFA and English football still in the Dark Ages

By Mark Duckworth

Fabio Capello is one of the most successful managers of the past decade. He was successful in Italy and Spain, but now his CV is blotted by his time managing the England national side. And it’s not just an insignificant blot, it’s England’s heaviest defeat in a World Cup and a last 16 knock-out. Even Sven made the quarter-finals. So, is it all Capello’s fault or has he just become another victim of the English game and the false promise of talent and success?

Everyone seems to know the score, they’ve seen it all before, and in Bloemfontein Fabio Capello realised what it means to be the England team manager as Germany ran riot over his sorry side.

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Earning Their Place

Courtesy Wikicommons Jarrett Campbell

By Ryan Fleming

It seemed like all the hype, all the excitement around the United States Men’s National Team game against Algeria was all for naught early Wednesday afternoon. The Yanks were still deadlocked in a scoreless game with the clock inching closer to the 90th minute. England, which was playing at the same time, led Slovenia, 1-0. So, if the Three Lions pulled out the win, which was seeming more and more plausible as the game went on, the Yanks would go home, and soccer would remain a second-rate sport for at least four more years.

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Capello and England Face Date with Destiny

Courtesy Flickr nyaa_birdies_perch

By Mark Duckworth

This World Cup was supposed to be different. This was supposed to be the one where England made its mark on the international stage and finally eclipsed that win back in 1966. But after two draws from two games, England is staring down the barrel of an early exit, and with Tyrant Terry causing more problems for Capello it could all end in tears come Wednesday afternoon.

“This is the big mistake, a very big mistake. But I hope that sometimes from the big mistake a big performance comes out.”

That’s what Capello told The Times regarding Terry’s outburst, and what he expects to see when his selected 11 walk into Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium.

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Most and Least Impressive Teams of Round 2

Courtesy sam_herd Flickr

By Kevin Koczwara, Ryan Fleming, and Joe Meloni

We have already looked at the teams that performed the best and the teams that played the worst in the first round of play of the World Cup. Now it is time for us to pick the teams that overachieved and the underachieved in the second round of play.

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Capello out-foxed in Cape Town

Courtesy Celebrity Cartoons Picasaweb

By Mark Duckworth of The National Game


“We’ve seen it all before” the famous line from the England football song Three Lions, and on Friday night that is what we got as England stumbled to a nil-nil draw with Algeria in Cape Town.

The impressive table mountain provides the back drop to Cape Town and with the flanking peaks of Devils Peak and Lions Head you would have thought England would have wanted to play football to match its surroundings. Instead it stuttered out onto the pristine pitch of the Green Point Stadium and simply bottled-it in front of almost a full house in Cape Town. The draw doesn’t mark the end of England’s World Cup campaign, but it looks mighty close.

The pre- and post-match talk was dominated by Capello’s team selection and his handling of the Robert Green situation. With regard to Green, if Capello thinks he isn’t mentally tough enough then he was right to drop him, and with the rumors of another blunder in training then it seems Capello got that right. David James was also arguably England’s best player on the night; he looked calm under pressure and saved England from what could have been the end of a World Cup dream as he cleared what was a terrible back pass from John Terry.

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Thoughts on USA vs. England

By Kevin Koczwara and Ryan Fleming

The United States and England was the Yanks and Americans biggest hyped game in a long time. Media outlets and fans were talking about it as if we were back in 1778 and Americans were fighting for their independence again — independence from comparisons on the soccer field/football pitch. And the game didn’t disappoint, except no one left a winner.

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England's Three Players The Yanks Need To Stop

Courtesy dullhunk Flickr

By Ryan Fleming

The United States Men’s Soccer Team are used to being underdogs. It’s a role they are starting to marvel in. If the Yanks want a chance against England, one of the favorites to win the World Cup, there’s a few players they’ll have to shut down.

First and foremost Oguchi Onyewu and Co. will have to eliminate Wayne Rooney. Rooney, one of the best strikers in the world, will have just as much, if not more pressure on his shoulders than say, Kaka of Brazil, or David Villa and Fernando Torres of Spain. So, his effort will be unmatched.

Rooney has the type of body to nudge defenders off the ball and the type of speed to glide by them and finish off opportunities never mind the power to drive the ball by an opposing keeper in a blink of an eye. He should be priority No.1 for Onyewu, Jay DeMerit and the Yanks.

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Keys for USMNT Success Against England

Courtesy Alison Ciarleglio of APC Studios

By Kevin Koczwara

It is almost impossible for me to go anywhere and meet anyone who isn’t at least a little interested in the United States Men’s National Team’s opening game against England in the World Cup this Saturday.

I have taken part in countless arguments, discourses and friendly discussions about the Yanks chances on Saturday — almost always trying to find keys to success for both sides. All of the discussions have allowed me to fine tune my thoughts. I have come up with three keys to the Yanks success against England.

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Capello Finalizes England's Squad

By Cameron Dickinson of The National Game

All the speculation finally ended at 3 p.m. yesterday when Fabio Capello put the nation out of its misery by naming the 2010 World Cup squad.

Gone were the shock call-ups of the past (Theo Walcott in 2006 anyone?) as the manager appears to be placing his faith in those that have experience at the international level, rather than those with fewer caps.

Already some are willing to write off the tournament as they do not agree with some of the choices made by the Italian, but then this would be the case no matter who was in the final 23. At least the questions can stop for now, and we can now look forward to the greatest event in the world — which kicks off in just nine days.

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Who Won’t Win the World Cup Part 3: Group C

By Ryan Thies of the Long Beach Post

After the 2006 tournament in which the US drew the Group of Death (eventual champs Italy, powerhouse Czech Republic, and up-and-coming Ghana) I was sure that this World Cup’s draw was going to crush us again. When the US got drawn with England (the top team in qualifying), I yelled something that I’m not allowed to repeat on this site. I was sure The Death was forming around us. So when Algeria and Slovenia became teams 3 and 4 in the group…well, let’s just say I was relieved. The US was handed advancing on a silver platter. But will they win it all? I think by now you’ve realized that with all the shortcomings of this year’s field, no one will win the World Cup. Especially not anyone in Group C…

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