Posts Tagged ‘Harry Kane’

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The Nation’s League appears to have been afforded a reasonable reception by the football-hungry populace of Britain. Don’t get us wrong, given the choice between Premier League and this international excuse for a competition, 99.9% would plump for the Premier League although, taking into consideration the standard of the domestic leagues in Scotland, Wales and Ireland, it is difficult to assume that the same could be said in those countries.

In fairness, Wales had a decent start in beating the Republic of Ireland but then came undone when they met Denmark, a proper team.

However, a small and remote European footballing outpost did manage a win when Scotland beat Albania 2-0. (more…)

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Well, that’s the first week out of the way. Only another five days to go before the return of Premier League football.

This is good news for lovers of the game, avid supporters and masochists as every form of satisfaction will be delivered or denied over the coming weekend.

Why is it that, when the Premier League has been absent since May, we get four games into the new season and have to have an international injury window?

Is this just because the powers-that-be are a bunch of sadists? We are not thinking necessarily of just the effect on the fans here. They will tune in to the meaningless rubbish served up as top quality international football because they have nothing else to watch, that’s just the way it is and is why England, for example, will always attract a decent sized crowd at Wembley despite being rubbish. (more…)

hk

As avid readers of these chronicles will be aware, our last article began with a short summation of Burnley’s game against Başakşehir of Turkey. We lamented the lack of interest shown by the TV companies in general in showing the game live on their platform and, in particular, BT Sport for only being remotely interested when Burnley played Aberdeen and even then only the leg at Turf Moor.

We must now hold up our collective hands and admit that they were right. Having pointed out that, with three sports channels, BT HAD to be showing something less interesting on at least two of them, it turns out we were wrong. (more…)

sandk

So Gareth Southgate is up for a gong. Having taken his mediocre team, which would struggle in the Premier League, to a World Cup semi-final he is now being tipped to be given the FIFA Coach of the Year award.

So what are the qualifications for this nomination? Well, apparently, not very many. He only beat teams who are ranked below his team except one. It was, unfortunately for Gawpy Gareth, the important one which prevented England undeservedly reaching their first World Cup final for 52 years. He didn’t beat a nation ranked above his team even after having been given two bites at the cherry, one of which was against their reserves.

So naturally, he should be given an award for his achievement. (more…)

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After tomorrow there will probably be very few articles on the subject of the World Cup. The winner will have been decided and, hopefully, Croatia will have collected the trophy for the first time ever. The alternative is another four years of French strutting and preening which, while not unusual, would definitely be more annoying.

Today, England met Belgium in the meaningless third placed play-off game. A game into which the England manager was trying to inject some life. He was doing so by trying to convince a very dubious public and an even more dubious WSA, that the game was not meaningless. (more…)

elc

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. (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…)

gandh

Nothing is happening. It’s as if somebody has pressed the global pause button. The World Cup has ground to a halt, even if only for two days. The transfer window is in danger of becoming even more boring than that game between France and Denmark.

What is going on and where is the news?

It got so bad that poor old Jim White on Sky Sports News had to resort to reporting the “incredible” news that a man had seen a bear in the woods in Montana and a shark had been spotted in the sea off the Australian coast! Truly incredible stuff!

Not to worry, avid readers, if there is any football-related news we will find it. Even if we have to actually read some other rags to do so. As far as the World Cup goes, this is what we think we know. (more…)

EW

The early game this time out was the one between Sweden and Switzerland and was always going to be a close run thing due to the two sides being of similar quality.

Sweden, post-Zlatan, look more of a team now than when the big striker was insisting on being the star man but, on the other hand, they don’t appear to have anybody with a magical touch who can turn a game for them.

That necessity didn’t arise during their match with Switzerland, who were over-reliant on Xherdan Shaqiri who, in turn, didn’t have one of his better days. (more…)

hk

Today it was England’s turn again. When listening to the pundits, in this case Rio Ferdinand, Frank Lampard and Alan Shearer, it would be easy to think that the team are among the favourites to win the World Cup this time out.

The three of them, along with host Gary Lineker, were almost gushing in their praise of how England managed to miss a few chances then scrape a 2-1 win, courtesy of a goal in injury time, against Tunisia who, a few days later, the Belgians put five past!

When the game against Panama kicked off England had only made one change which was Dele Alli being replaced by Ruben Loftus-Cheek. The constantly misfiring Raheem Sterling should have been replaced but, for some reason known only to Gareth Southgate, he wasn’t . (more…)