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  #61  
Old 07-07-2006, 01:43 PM
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I am puzzled by the inclusion of Waddle in so many lists. He was a serial failure for England, despite being one of Robson's Geordie favourites, given dozens of chances.
He had a 2-3 year Indian summer in French football, but did nothing for our national team - pretty much like John Barnes who became a regular for years on the basis of being a Liverpool player, and 'that' goal.
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  #62  
Old 07-07-2006, 02:25 PM
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Barnes wasa genius. Even when he wasn't at the tip top of his game he was better than nearly anyone else. He nearly saved the Argentina match for England in 86. From what I remember he never gave the ball away in any games ever, but a bit like with Ray Wilkins, that wasn't a skill that was much appreciated.

Of the current generation's attackers being missing, none of them has proved it at World Cup level, apart from Owen. Even Shearer was poor-to-average in France.
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  #63  
Old 07-07-2006, 04:09 PM
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Quote:
Originally posted by selhurstparkflyer
We qualified in 82 and 86 and 90 though...it was the 1970s when we didn't!!
Thats my point, England not qualifing for 74 and 78 was always brought up and compaired to Sven's record but the two periods don't really bare any comparason as it was that much harder in the 70's.

While I'm not sure he would make my team am I the only one who rates Scholes at his best well above both Lampard and Gerrard? Not only better/smarter going forward but actually able to keep possesion in midfield.
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  #64  
Old 07-07-2006, 04:11 PM
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It is certainly a myth that Barnes got, what? 60 caps on the basis of one goal - he was far better than that, and far better for England than that. Still you can't say that he nearly saved the Argentina match for England and then leave Lineker out of your team, I'm afraid; he "nearly saved" it in the sense that he set up one goal and nearly another, for Lineker - who scored something like ten or eleven goals for England in World Cups.
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  #65  
Old 07-07-2006, 04:33 PM
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Shilton

Sansom
Walker
Ferdinand
Neville

Robson
Gazza
Hoddle

Barnes
Lineker
Beardsley
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  #66  
Old 07-07-2006, 04:42 PM
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In fact if Sven had have picked the following from the off we may be actually playing on Sunday & we would be having this "might have been" discussion!

Robinson

A Cole
Terry
Ferdinand
Neville

J Cole
Hargreaves
Gerrard
Lennon

Rooney
A fit bleeding striker!
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  #67  
Old 07-07-2006, 05:18 PM
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I don't think this argument about "lucky" qualifying groups stands up to scrutiny.

You make your own luck in those draws to the extent that they're seeded according to your recent record. The reason we ended up having to qualify out of groups containing Italy for the 78 and 98 World Cups wasn't because Ron Greenwood & Glen Hoddle were "unlucky"; it was because we'd failed to qualify for the previous tournament so we our seeding had slipped and we ended up in the 2nd tier of seeds.

Similarly, we had relatively easy groups later on because we'd sailed through the previous qualifying competions. Graham Taylor was unlucky to have Holland & Norway in the same group but it was no worse than Germany & Greece which SGE had to get past.

For the record, here's our qualify groups from 78 onwards. Which do you think were outrageously easy/difficult out of this lot:

World Cup
78;Italy,Finland,Luxembourg
82;Romania,Hungary,Switzerland,Norway
86;Romania,N.Ireland,Turkey,Finland
90;Poland,Sweden,Albania
94;Holland,Norway,Poland,Turkey,San Marino
98;Italy,Poland,Georgia,Moldova
02;Germany,Greece,Finland,Albania
06;Poland,Austria,Wales,N.Ireland,Azerbaijan

Euro Championship
80;Bulgaria,Denmark,Ireland,N.Ireland
84;Hungary,Denmark,Greece,Luxembourg
88;Yugoslavia,N.Ireland,Turkey
92;Poland,Ireland,Turkey
00;Sweden,Poland,Bulgaria,Luxembourg
04;Turkey,Slovakia,Macedonia,Liechtenstein

If the 06 WC group looks easier than average, we deserved it by earning a top seeding by beating Germany in the previous campaign. Most of those groups look pretty much of a muchness to me. Fair enough; 2nd place became good enough to qualify post-80, when it had previously meant missing out, but that being the case, the "lucky" managers were the ones who sneaked through in 2nd place.

If (like Sven) you qualified by coming top of a 5 team group, it's hard to imagine what more he was expected to do. Saying he's had a "lucky" draw in the past 2 qualifying groups is a bit like bemoaning Federer's luck in getting an easy draw to the Wimbledon final. He earnt it.
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  #68  
Old 07-07-2006, 05:18 PM
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Quote:
Originally posted by Billy Gilbert
In fact if Sven had have picked the following from the off we may be actually playing on Sunday & we would be having this "might have been" discussion!

Robinson

A Cole
Terry
Ferdinand
Neville

J Cole
Hargreaves
Gerrard
Lennon

Rooney
A fit bleeding striker!
Agree, that's probably England's best team, and I stress the word TEAM.
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  #69  
Old 07-07-2006, 05:39 PM
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Unbelievable how crap the 86 squad was...with a few exceptions.

Anyways.....I'd plump for...

Shilton

G Neville
Butcher
Walker
Sansom

Robson
Gerrard
Gascoigne
Beckham

Rooney
Lineker

Subs
Seaman Coppell Barnes Sheringham and Parker (mmm versatile).

Not surprised Lampard was exposed as not being half the player people think he is - good at what he does but one dimensional. I can't believe there's this battle between him and Gerrard, who's clearly twice the player he is IMO.
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  #70  
Old 07-07-2006, 05:40 PM
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Quote:
Originally posted by ElwissAtMemphis
I don't think this argument about "lucky" qualifying groups stands up to scrutiny.

You make your own luck in those draws to the extent that they're seeded according to your recent record. The reason we ended up having to qualify out of groups containing Italy for the 78 and 98 World Cups wasn't because Ron Greenwood & Glen Hoddle were "unlucky"; it was because we'd failed to qualify for the previous tournament so we our seeding had slipped and we ended up in the 2nd tier of seeds.

Similarly, we had relatively easy groups later on because we'd sailed through the previous qualifying competions. Graham Taylor was unlucky to have Holland & Norway in the same group but it was no worse than Germany & Greece which SGE had to get past.

For the record, here's our qualify groups from 78 onwards. Which do you think were outrageously easy/difficult out of this lot:

World Cup
78;Italy,Finland,Luxembourg
82;Romania,Hungary,Switzerland,Norway
86;Romania,N.Ireland,Turkey,Finland
90;Poland,Sweden,Albania
94;Holland,Norway,Poland,Turkey,San Marino
98;Italy,Poland,Georgia,Moldova
02;Germany,Greece,Finland,Albania
06;Poland,Austria,Wales,N.Ireland,Azerbaijan

Euro Championship
80;Bulgaria,Denmark,Ireland,N.Ireland
84;Hungary,Denmark,Greece,Luxembourg
88;Yugoslavia,N.Ireland,Turkey
92;Poland,Ireland,Turkey
00;Sweden,Poland,Bulgaria,Luxembourg
04;Turkey,Slovakia,Macedonia,Liechtenstein

If the 06 WC group looks easier than average, we deserved it by earning a top seeding by beating Germany in the previous campaign. Most of those groups look pretty much of a muchness to me. Fair enough; 2nd place became good enough to qualify post-80, when it had previously meant missing out, but that being the case, the "lucky" managers were the ones who sneaked through in 2nd place.

If (like Sven) you qualified by coming top of a 5 team group, it's hard to imagine what more he was expected to do. Saying he's had a "lucky" draw in the past 2 qualifying groups is a bit like bemoaning Federer's luck in getting an easy draw to the Wimbledon final. He earnt it.
Sven didnt get us to the 98 WC or euro 2000 though did he plus of course we wouldnt have even got to the latter under the pre 96 qualifcation system. I wouldnt say his record has no merit(winning the qualifing group in 2002 was certainly an achievement from his starting position) just that direct comparasons to the 70's are not possible.
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  #71  
Old 07-07-2006, 05:58 PM
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I thought Waddle gave the most impressive performance by an england player I've ever seen: 1990 semi v Germany
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  #72  
Old 07-07-2006, 07:26 PM
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In case it has escaped your attention, Elwiss, Sven very very nearly did not get past his first qualifying group. Yes, he got a wonderful honyemoon earning victory against the weakest German side we are ever likely to face but at home, he royally fukked up against not only Greece but also the might of Albania. Thanks to Germnay being equally woeful at home to Finland, we got through. Admittedly that was partly due to Keegan's total incompetnace but if you really think that Germany and Greece are comparable to 1993 Holland and Rep of Ireland, you need help my old friend.

And how did we earn seeding in this competition? Oh yes, because of England's 1 decent performance v Argentina where we sat 11 men in our own penalty and attempted to stop the opposition scoring. Finally, it worked, after failimg against Sweden in Round 1 (a game that cost us topping the group and entering by far the better half of the draw, by the way).

And from there we continued; score a goal and hand the initiaitive to the opposition. It happened in qualifiers, it happened in friendlies and it happened in competition, because we got 1 jammy win against a well below par Argentina, somehow you think SGE is marvellous. He isn't. He's an arse who cannot his brain out of dfensive mode. Its boring to watch and self defeating. On average you would expcxet to win about 1 big game in 5 going what he did, and that's exactly the return he got.

Good riddance.
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  #73  
Old 07-07-2006, 07:45 PM
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Quote:
Originally posted by selhurstparkflyer
....

Good riddance.
Without straying from the excellent theme of this thread, I am so thankful SGE has gone. Wasted opportunity. Not that I am convinced we have a better replacement.
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Old 07-07-2006, 07:46 PM
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Old 07-07-2006, 08:55 PM
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Quote:
Originally posted by selhurstparkflyer
In case it has escaped your attention, Elwiss, Sven very very nearly did not get past his first qualifying group. Yes, he got a wonderful honyemoon earning victory against the weakest German side we are ever likely to face but at home, he royally fukked up against not only Greece but also the might of Albania. Thanks to Germnay being equally woeful at home to Finland, we got through. Admittedly that was partly due to Keegan's total incompetnace but if you really think that Germany and Greece are comparable to 1993 Holland and Rep of Ireland, you need help my old friend.

The word "biased" doesn't do your appraisal of our 2002 World Cup qualifying campaign justice. Delusional is nearer the truth.

Eriksson inherited a team that had already played twice and had lost at home to Germany and drew in Finland. With 6 matches remaining, we won all of the next 5, which included 3 away fixtures (incorporating that flukey 5-1 win in Munich) leaving ourselves needing a single point from the final match to top the group which we achieved.

He "very very nearly did not get past his first qualifying group" !!! What else was he supposed to do for Christ's sake ? If 5 wins and a draw from 6 count as "royally fukked up" then you are one seriously harsh task master. I'd love to hear your appraisal of England's previous qualifying campaigns. The fact that it was a close run thing was down to our failure in the first 2 fixtures. Holding Eriksson responsible for that is beyond harsh. It's frankly insane.

And how did we earn seeding in this competition? Oh yes, because of England's 1 decent performance v Argentina where we sat 11 men in our own penalty and attempted to stop the opposition scoring. Finally, it worked, after failimg against Sweden in Round 1 (a game that cost us topping the group and entering by far the better half of the draw, by the way)...

That's not how I remember that match but I suppose that's just my opinion. Did anybody else see the EnglandvArgentina match in Sapporo that way ?

I'm not proclaiming SGE as the greatest manager of all time or anything. He made mistakes just as every manager makes mistakes. Steve Coppell made some appalling decisions in his time at Palace. Let's just keep a sense of perspective here.

The players at his disposal were no better than any other manager in the past 30/40 years; I think that's fair. Apart from tournaments held in England we've got as far as the Semis ONCE ... that's ONCE ... in our entire bloody history. Eriksson got us to the Quarter Finals of all 3 tournaments during his tenure. Only Bobby Robson got us further and even then we were frankly woeful against Ireland, lucky to avoid penalties against Belgium and were out-played by Cameroon, sneaking through thanks to 2 penalties.

The opprobrium reigned down on him simply defies all common sense. His record in qualifiers AND tournaments is better than every manager since Ramsey but somehow it's not good enough. It's like some contageous outbreak of insanity; we've had the laughable scenario of the British press calling for the return of either Venables or Robson; both managers with inferior records to SGE.

We didn't exactly play scintillating football, that's true. But neither did Brazil who went out at the same stage; as did Argentina and Spain went out even earlier. It's a sad fact of modern football but results are paramount. Eriksson's just a symptom of that general trend, not the cause of a particular ailment in English football.

I don't think he's "marvellous" as you seem to think. I do think that an Englishman with a comparable record wouldn't have been subject to such hysterical criticism. Since when exactly was England reaching 3 consecutive quarter-finals (and then going out twice on penalties) a below-parr performance for our national team? Never is the irrefutable answer. It's an almost unprecedented run of success relatively speaking. That might be a sad reflection on English football but it's the truth.

We're not sodding Brazil and never will be. It's all very well expecting the best but slating somebody for failing to achieve what all his predecessors have failed to achieve is just unfair. We just ain't that good ... get used to it.

Last edited by ElwissAtMemphis; 07-07-2006 at 09:35 PM.
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  #76  
Old 07-07-2006, 09:32 PM
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Originally posted by El Aguila
It is certainly a myth that Barnes got, what? 60 caps on the basis of one goal - he was far better than that, and far better for England than that. Still you can't say that he nearly saved the Argentina match for England and then leave Lineker out of your team, I'm afraid; he "nearly saved" it in the sense that he set up one goal and nearly another, for Lineker - who scored something like ten or eleven goals for England in World Cups.
Hey, I had Lineker on the bench and him and Barnes aren't chasing the same spot! Close call between Lineker and Owen, but my feeling is that Lineker never terrified the opposition to quite the extent Owen did. A kind of who quickens the pulse test.

Elwiss has done great work here and I broadly agree with his conclusions about Sven, but probably Sven should have gone a few years ago. I've no data to back this up, but my impression is that other countries, successful ones too, sack their managers more often, or the managers leave more often. Four years - the gap between World Cups - is a long cycle in a team's development. Probably long enough. More than that and managers tend to stick with what they know too much.
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Old 08-07-2006, 12:31 AM
Celestial Empire Celestial Empire is offline
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Quote:
Originally posted by Elephant with mouse gyp
Barnes wasa genius. Even when he wasn't at the tip top of his game he was better than nearly anyone else. He nearly saved the Argentina match for England in 86. From what I remember he never gave the ball away in any games ever, but a bit like with Ray Wilkins, that wasn't a skill that was much appreciated.
Barnes was never 'at the tip top of his game' for England, with the exception of the Brazil friendly. He WAS a bit like Ray Wilkins - a dead weight for the team long after he should have been dropped.
Genius ?

B.T.W. I said 'on the basis of the Brazil goal and playing for Liverpool' - any English player in the Liverpool team could be sure of a call up in those days.

Question for Joyce the Voice : Do you think that Motson (despite his age), Drury, Hansen and all the other pundits and hacks who talk about 'slide-rule passes', have any idea what a slide-rule is ?
(that is, a rather rough and ready manual calculating machine/gizmo).

Last edited by Celestial Empire; 08-07-2006 at 12:46 AM.
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Old 08-07-2006, 07:33 AM
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Where's Geoff Hurst - a hatrick in a World Cup final and yet not in anyone's team?
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Old 08-07-2006, 10:10 AM
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Elwiss and I must agree to differ but he is wrong to assume that such hysterical criticism (from me at last) is reserved for a foreign manager. It is an unfortunate part of English football, that the FA has an appalling track record of managerial appointments.

Nelly's point about sackings is a good one and clearly the FA was worried about losing face and tens of millions pounds by ridding itself of Sven when it had a chance. That attitude sits very well with the conservative nature of its previous appointments.

Regards the team, Gray Neville's inclusion in so many sides highlights just what a dearth of talent we have had at right back in recent years; when he retires there might even be a chance for Boycey.
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Old 08-07-2006, 02:32 PM
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I would have been happy with Sven if he'd left after the last World Cup, or Portugal 2004.
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