More From England’s Loss And An Unexpected Twist In The Transfer Window

Posted: July 13, 2018 in Arsenal, Chelsea, England, Football, International Football, Liverpool, Manchester United, Opinion, Premier League, The World Cup, Tottenham Hotspur, Transfers
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England finally reverted to type. Having beaten the team four places below them in the world rankings to reach the semi-final they then went out, quite tamely, to the team eight places below them.

In fairness, they have made massive strides forward by getting this far in a World Cup but, also in fairness, they came a cropper as soon as they met a decent team.

Forget Belgium in the group stage. That wasn’t a competitive game. It was a game between two reserve teams who had seen their senior players already qualify for the next stage. So the first real test was against Sweden and they passed with flying colours. They passed mainly because Sweden failed to work out the English system.

People who said that England got the lucky draw were right but it might have been a little less painful had they gone out in the quarter-final playing Brazil. This would have entailed getting the “unlucky” draw but would have lowered expectations dramatically.

In fact, the team would return home having achieved exactly what they were aiming for which was an appearance in the quarter-final of a World Cup. What will now happen is that they will still return home having had a “successful” tournament but will be disappointed because they actually had a chance to win it!

This is still a young team but, as Gary Neville said very early on, they only have one world-class player and that isn’t usually enough to win the World Cup.

The trophy will now go to France because they have Pogba, Griezmann, M’Bappé, Kanté and Varane. They may play defensively and rely on counter-attacks but they have the players to do exactly that.

Croatia, eight places below England in the world rankings, worked out how to play against a team with only one world-class player, (who has probably been carrying an injury since the Colombia game), their own three won’t be enough against a team with five.


Kieran Trippier celebrates his first ever goal for England and his first goal for anyone in two years!

The game itself started quite brightly for England and they were ahead thanks to a free-kick which was curled in by Kieran Trippier. What they needed to do, whilst in the ascendancy, was score at least one more. They failed to do so and, ultimately, paid the price.

Too many players didn’t turn up for this game. Despite the effort and the passion being evident from the start, what was missing was the skill and ability.

Harry Kane was largely anonymous the whole game.

Dele Alli did nothing.

Raheem Sterling could have been substituted in the first twenty minutes. He was his usual self. Making lots of runs which, of course, had defenders chasing him, but then giving the ball away, losing possession or just plain falling over.

Jesse Lingard huffed and puffed to no avail and John Stones, when leaving his man for the winning Croatian goal, looked around for somebody to blame. There was no-one.

The only player to come out of the game with credit was Jordan Pickford.

The rest of the team were pedestrian and Croatia’s two goals were perfect examples of that. The first was scored by Ivan Perišić when he nipped in front of Kyle Walker to poke the ball in and the second, as we said, was when John Stones fell asleep and Mario Mandžukić was there to score.

So, despite giving everything and trying until the end they came up short and the final score after extra time was Croatia 2-1 England.

The dream is over for another four years. The reality is probably over for a bit longer. As has been said, this was a very good chance to win the trophy and another chance like this may not come around again for a long while.

That beig the case then the players need to improve. They are used to going out of tournaments against teams like Germany or Argentina who are both better than England. This time they went out to a team who are, supposedly, considerably worse than England.

It’s coming home alright. The plane with the England team on it, that is.

And finally…..


Fulham’s new signing who was also of interest, reportedly, to Manchester United and Chelsea, so why has he joined Fulham?

Fulham…..yes, Fulham have signed Jean Michaël Seri from Nice. This was a player who was, supposedly, of interest to Manchester, (both clubs), Chelsea and one or two others.

He has been signed on a four year deal for £25 million. What will now happen is that he will play well for a season and then one of the bigger clubs will buy him for £80 million. Thats just how it works.

Fulham have also signed Maxime Le Marchand from the same club obviously on a buy-one-get-one-free offer. So they would appear to be taking next season quite seriously even if they are already among the favourites to be relegated.


  1. RedMe says:

    Much the same as Belgium. Every game Trippier was replaced in the second half by Dier and it was a good substitution every time.
    He left Trippier on the pitch way too long. Trent Alexander-Arnold was on the bench, why did he not bring him on? Danny Rose is more experienced but didn’t change anything. Again the inexperience of the manager in a difficult situation was shown up by his hesitation. Yes England did well in my opinion but, like Belgium, with the squad at the managers disposal they could have done better.
    At least Martinez, unlike Southgate, didn’t look happy to compete for third place.


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