Posts Tagged ‘Belgium’

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(England supporters strike a pose which has become all-too familiar over the last 50-odd years)

Now that the dust has settled on England’s World Cup success/failure, do we really have a team capable of winning a future tournament?

On the evidence of this one the answer has to be a pretty emphatic NO.

Even the “experts” are finally starting to come round to our way of thinking which, all along, has been that this was an average England team and they put in some very poor performances on their way to fourth place. (more…)

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After four years of waiting, not quite with bated breath, the World Cup arrived and here we are already at the semi-final stage. What is surprising about this year’s tournament is that England’s players are still there!

For the first time since 1990, (Gazza’s tears at missing the final they never made it to, and all that), England have reached those dizzy heights once again.

Whether by luck, good judgement or good play is debatable but they are there, no denying it. (more…)

After what seemed to be a year-long wait, which actually lasted a whole two days, football is finally back. We never thought we would be pleased to see the return of the international version of the game but, when nothing else is available, beggars can’t be choosers.

No doubt we will even sit up through all hours of the night watching meaningless pre-season tour games when they begin in three or so weeks as well.

Still, there’s some meaningful stuff has to happen between now and then such as the little matter of who is going to be crowned World Champions. Now that we are sure it won’t be Germany, picking the winner is not as straightforward as it once was. (more…)

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Having spent most of my working life scraping a living in the sales industry I have met, over the years, my fair share of blindly optimistic people. It helps, apparently, to think that something will go well even when, to the unbiased observer, it obviously will not.

I have nothing against optimism and positive mental attitude but, as with most things, there is a time and a place. (more…)

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This was going to be titled, ‘England and the Meaningless Friendlies, (part III).’

As anybody who follows these inane waffles will know, I have already written and published the first two parts, which question the value of these games.

However, this was not a meaningless friendly. This was one of the most meaningful friendlies played in a very long time.

It was a friendly football match that actually meant something for all the wrong reasons. It was right that it was played. Any act designed to terrorise, kill and maim people is sick enough in its own right but, to then cede more to the perpetrators by cancelling a sporting event which had been planned for a while, somehow makes it even worse, if that is at all possible. (more…)

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There seems to be more international football matches nowadays than ever before. To me it is an irritant rather than something to look forward to. Here is what I thought about it a just over a year ago.

The football season just starts and we need a break for internationals. We get a month or so further down the line and we need another break for internationals. Some of them are qualifiers, meaningless or otherwise, some of them are just friendlies, meaningless friendlies. (more…)


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Manchester City, thanks to international games being played during a football season, lost out considerably before they took on Bournemouth at the Etihad.

It is fair to say that Bournemouth also lost out to injuries to key players but that is a different situation. At least the Bournemouth players were injured playing for Bournemouth and, as they are unlikely to be challenging the top of the Premier League, they need to buy in January and survive until next season, when they should have a reasonable team.

City can thank Argentina, Spain, Serbia and Belgium for their absentees in this game. All City now have to do is get them fit, pay their wages and try and win games without Sergio Aguero, David Silva, Aleksandr Kolarov and Vincent Kompany. (more…)