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England v Spain - Verdict

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Mad for Chelsea
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Post by legendkillar Sat 12 Nov 2011, 19:18

Friendlies always draw different responses. Club managers twitching and fans bemoaning another pointless trip to Wembley which I can understand give the financial climate and the letdown an England performance can draw. However, Pundits and Commentators annoy the crap out of me. Even the fans. This 'myth' and yes I call it a 'myth' that Spain are like this amazing team. Granted they are very talented side. I have seen the 1970 team, the 1974 Total Football Holland team and the 1994 Brazil team. All streets ahead of this Spain crop. If I could sum up Spain's performance tonight, it has been pass pass pass pass, interception, chase chase then pass pass pass. See the thing is yes Spain will dominate the ball and no doubt the possession stats too, but that doesn't win games. What I enjoyed about the England performance was that they said to Spain 'come on' attack us, we will soak up the pressure like a spounge and then take our chance when it comes. The first half was fantastic from England. How many times did Jones find himself in running through the middle of the pitch un-challenged? Imagine that being Gerrard or Rooney? See the picture? Yes the players won't score 8's or 9's in the papers tomorrow, but for me it is a 9/10. Lescott and Jagielka for me were brilliant' Cool and calm when winning the ball and not hoofing it out. My only criticism was the lack of width tonight. I thought Milner was stiffled out on the left. Walcott just didn't do what he did best and stretch the players. Yes Spain doubled up on him, but still for me we just didn't stretch play far enough. Parker and Lampard were brilliant tonight. They hounded Xavi and Iniesta when they could and disrupted the play brilliantly. Spain used width and when that wasn't proving to be fruitacious, they played into England's hands by trying to come into the centre. England took that one chance and Bent was fantastic. He done so much running and despite not getting a goal, made one. A very un-selfish performance. Look deeper. The first half. Why did England look just a bit dangerous when pushing forward? Because when you had Spain with Alonso, Busquets, Iniesta, Silva and Xavi in the middle trying to get width through Arbeloa and Alba and England used Parker, Lampard, Milner, Jones and Cole closing down and the outlet was Walcott and Bent. Normally you would have a full back tuck in and Bent or Walcott would then drop back. This is what was key for England because it opened the middle of the park for England to run down. This performance has re-inhanced my confidence in Capello and England. Parker for me top English in the country right now. Capello got a result and yes both teams missing big guns, but for me it was a giant step forward for England. Jones looking better with each game. Shall have to see what happens againt Sweden. Praise for England all round. Yahoo

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Post by mystiroakey Sat 12 Nov 2011, 19:25

the good thing is is that many of those players have played against spainish opposition- we know what to do against barcelona- and we did it. We wernt amazing and spain looked a very good side- but we will allways do more with the little possesion we have (in pro rata terms), as with barcelona, spain can be guilty of that one pass to many. england as allways that one pass to few !!!!!

but anyway good win for england- good quality positional play- in defense they looked superb- everyone knew what to do- great counter football.

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Post by Guest Sat 12 Nov 2011, 19:53

Given the result and the fact that we restricted the best team on the planet to a couple of shots on target I'd say this was an 8/10 performance. But lets be honest here we were easily second fiddle in the first half and our overall ball retention is nowhere near good enough.

At the end of the day it was a friendly win and nothing more. It was only when the Spaniards went a goal down did they play with more urgency. Had this been a competitive match then it would have been a whole different spectacle.

That said I'd rather see us win these friendies than lose/draw them and it's a good win nonetheless. Scott Parker is starting to look a very good international footballer but given his position in the team and the level of opposition he is going to look very busy because chase-ball is right up his street.

I'll personally save overall judgement for the game of the Euro's.

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Post by Thomond Sat 12 Nov 2011, 20:02

What was the final score? (I was watching the Munster match)

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Post by Guest Sat 12 Nov 2011, 20:03

Thomond wrote:What was the final score? (I was watching the Munster match)

1-0

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Post by legendkillar Sat 12 Nov 2011, 20:21

FreekShow wrote:Given the result and the fact that we restricted the best team on the planet to a couple of shots on target I'd say this was an 8/10 performance. But lets be honest here we were easily second fiddle in the first half and our overall ball retention is nowhere near good enough.

At the end of the day it was a friendly win and nothing more. It was only when the Spaniards went a goal down did they play with more urgency. Had this been a competitive match then it would have been a whole different spectacle.

That said I'd rather see us win these friendies than lose/draw them and it's a good win nonetheless. Scott Parker is starting to look a very good international footballer but given his position in the team and the level of opposition he is going to look very busy because chase-ball is right up his street.

I'll personally save overall judgement for the game of the Euro's.

Even if it were 'competitive' I still wouldn't have fancied Spain for a goal.

All they would do is pass pass pass. All good and well doing it in your own half and plugging the middle up, but Spain offer nothing on the width side of things. I think they will struggle in the Euro's.

My only concern with this performance is that if Rooney had played instead of Bent, he would've played so much deeper and we wouldn't have looked dangerous in the 2nd half of the pitch.

I would like to see Walcott run more with the ball and not stop start with it.

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Post by legendkillar Sat 12 Nov 2011, 20:24

I think also looking at who would start the first match for England at the Euro 2012 the only certs for me at the moment would be Hart, Cole, Parker, Gerrard. For me all the other places are still up for grabs.

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Post by sportform Sat 12 Nov 2011, 20:24

I thought it was a typical England performance from a major tournament. The only difference was we won 1-0 rather than concede a late goal and lose on penalties.

I thought most players were too deep, particularly in the first half. Walcott did have some flashes but often when he plays for England he ends up getting dragged back (as Milner did too) and therefore when he gets the ball his runs start too deep.

I would like to see Walcott play upfront on Wednesday with maybe Ashley Young in a supporting role.

No surprise in England's goal as the majority of our goals came from set pieces. Maybe Crouch or Carroll would have been a better option up front, if we are going to play the long ball. Then atleast we have a target, someone who can hold the ball up and a bigger threat at set plays.

My biggest worry is the media and so-called pundits saying "if we can beat Spain without the likes of Terry and Gerrard wait until they comeback..."

Well when Terry and Gerrard have played in big games we usually lose. Terry is too slow for international football (watch Jamaica 2006, Ecuador 2006, Paraquay 2006, Germany 2010...), Gerrard is one of the biggest culprits of giving the ball away with his constant 'Hollywood passing' (see last world cup).
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Post by mystiroakey Sat 12 Nov 2011, 20:31

"I thought it was a typical England performance from a major tournament.
The only difference was we won 1-0 rather than concede a late goal and
lose on penalties."

glad you said that- because during the game i was thinking the same thing.


I personaly dont want to see gerrard back in the team-We need to test the younger players in that role- because the way rooney is taking to the CM role at united and we have wilshire to come back- what is the point in sticking with someone like gerrard(lampard is the perfect player at the moment- but we know he is good- he isnt the future).

so hoepfully no lampard next game- happy for him to play the odd game and go to the euros. but i dont want lamps and gerrard!!

No disresepct to gerrard great club player- if not one of englands all time best(club) player- but he is injured and getting on- future time - he has had his go

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Post by Guest Sat 12 Nov 2011, 20:33

im happy we won, it wasnt a particuarly great game, but great win for confidence of our squad thumbsup

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Post by legendkillar Sat 12 Nov 2011, 20:33

I am amazed people are writing Gerrard off. Someone point to a midfielder who can play up the pitch and have pace and energy?

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Post by sportform Sat 12 Nov 2011, 20:34

legendkillar wrote:I would like to see Walcott run more with the ball and not stop start with it.

I mentioned something similar above. Will go into it a bit more here.

Walcott is not really a dribbling winger in the style of say Lennon, Young, Johnson etc He is (more) a forward that has been playing wide.

When he plays for England (compared to Arsenal) he ends up playing much deeper (usually because England play 4-4-2/ tonight because the opposition forced a 4-5-1). this means when he gets the ball he is too deep and the support to one-twos isn't there.

Walcott is much better at running off defenders, finding space and creating space than dribbling.

I would like to see him play further up the field, maybe with a Rooney type player behind him. (Ian Wright had a similar article about Walcott & RVP last season in The Sun).

The main reasons where 1) Walcott would have the whole width of the pitch to move into 2) When he does make moves on run onto through balls he would be in on goal rather than stuck out wide. 3) With Walcott moving across the goal, this would drag defenders out of place creating space for the second striker and attacking midfielders.
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Post by GG Sat 12 Nov 2011, 20:36

If I was choosing the team, I'd play Parker Wilshere and Lampard in the centre

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Post by sportform Sat 12 Nov 2011, 20:38

legendkillar wrote:I am amazed people are writing Gerrard off. Someone point to a midfielder who can play up the pitch and have pace and energy?

The trouble England have had over reason years is certain players came straight back into the team. The players earned their shirt tonight, Gerrard needs to earn it back when and if he gets a chance. The same with Terry and Rooney (if England get past the group stage).
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Post by legendkillar Sat 12 Nov 2011, 20:40

sportsville wrote:
legendkillar wrote:I would like to see Walcott run more with the ball and not stop start with it.

I mentioned something similar above. Will go into it a bit more here.

Walcott is not really a dribbling winger in the style of say Lennon, Young, Johnson etc He is (more) a forward that has been playing wide.

When he plays for England (compared to Arsenal) he ends up playing much deeper (usually because England play 4-4-2/ tonight because the opposition forced a 4-5-1). this means when he gets the ball he is too deep and the support to one-twos isn't there.

Walcott is much better at running off defenders, finding space and creating space than dribbling.

I would like to see him play further up the field, maybe with a Rooney type player behind him. (Ian Wright had a similar article about Walcott & RVP last season in The Sun).

The main reasons where 1) Walcott would have the whole width of the pitch to move into 2) When he does make moves on run onto through balls he would be in on goal rather than stuck out wide. 3) With Walcott moving across the goal, this would drag defenders out of place creating space for the second striker and attacking midfielders.

I agree with that.

Walcott's problem has always been he always tries to go outside too much. There have been instances when he hasn't done this and reaped the rewards when playing down the middle. Liverpool CL 2007 and Croatia 2007.

Wenger has never played him up top off Van Persie and I can see why. The 2 just don't function well together. He and RVP would end up running into each other's space.

Capello doesn't know what to do with him and nor does Wenger. That being said I have always wanted to see him up along side Rooney.

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Post by mystiroakey Sat 12 Nov 2011, 20:42

rooney has to be picked for the euros- even though he wont be in the groups. not only is he our best player he is a utilty player as well- can pretty much play anywhere

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Post by mystiroakey Sat 12 Nov 2011, 20:43

"There have been instances when he hasn't done this and reaped the
rewards when playing down the middle. Liverpool CL 2007 and Croatia
2007."

what about the time he came on as sub and destroyed barcalona! what a goal that was

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Post by legendkillar Sat 12 Nov 2011, 20:43

sportsville wrote:
legendkillar wrote:I am amazed people are writing Gerrard off. Someone point to a midfielder who can play up the pitch and have pace and energy?

The trouble England have had over reason years is certain players came straight back into the team. The players earned their shirt tonight, Gerrard needs to earn it back when and if he gets a chance. The same with Terry and Rooney (if England get past the group stage).

Well Terry and Rooney wouldn't be my first picks. Rooney hasn't scored in the last 2 major tournaments. Yes I agree Gerrard needs match time and has been fortunate by the injury to Wilshere.

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Post by Guest Sat 12 Nov 2011, 20:44

legendkillar wrote:
sportsville wrote:
legendkillar wrote:I am amazed people are writing Gerrard off. Someone point to a midfielder who can play up the pitch and have pace and energy?

The trouble England have had over reason years is certain players came straight back into the team. The players earned their shirt tonight, Gerrard needs to earn it back when and if he gets a chance. The same with Terry and Rooney (if England get past the group stage).

Well Terry and Rooney wouldn't be my first picks. Rooney hasn't scored in the last 2 major tournaments. Yes I agree Gerrard needs match time and has been fortunate by the injury to Wilshere.

completely agree mate, Terry is past it, and Rooney dosent score enough goals at international level

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Post by mystiroakey Sat 12 Nov 2011, 20:46

cricketfan90 wrote:
legendkillar wrote:
sportsville wrote:
legendkillar wrote:I am amazed people are writing Gerrard off. Someone point to a midfielder who can play up the pitch and have pace and energy?

The trouble England have had over reason years is certain players came straight back into the team. The players earned their shirt tonight, Gerrard needs to earn it back when and if he gets a chance. The same with Terry and Rooney (if England get past the group stage).

Well Terry and Rooney wouldn't be my first picks. Rooney hasn't scored in the last 2 major tournaments. Yes I agree Gerrard needs match time and has been fortunate by the injury to Wilshere.

completely agree mate, Terry is past it, and Rooney dosent score enough goals at international level

cant agree at all - rooney is a given. he score bags of goals. 9 in 9 qualifyers for the wc qualy- then he got injured and had a bad run- just getting his form back to his best!

we have some good prospects but none of them are upto rooneys versitilyty- even if he pplays deep he is the only player to be able to pass with such awareness and accuracy!

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Post by mystiroakey Sat 12 Nov 2011, 20:47

classic case tonight- the team played great defensively but had noone that could provide a killer pass- rooney does it week in week out!

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Post by legendkillar Sat 12 Nov 2011, 20:49

mystiroakey wrote:
cricketfan90 wrote:
legendkillar wrote:
sportsville wrote:
legendkillar wrote:I am amazed people are writing Gerrard off. Someone point to a midfielder who can play up the pitch and have pace and energy?

The trouble England have had over reason years is certain players came straight back into the team. The players earned their shirt tonight, Gerrard needs to earn it back when and if he gets a chance. The same with Terry and Rooney (if England get past the group stage).

Well Terry and Rooney wouldn't be my first picks. Rooney hasn't scored in the last 2 major tournaments. Yes I agree Gerrard needs match time and has been fortunate by the injury to Wilshere.

completely agree mate, Terry is past it, and Rooney dosent score enough goals at international level

cant agree at all - rooney is a given. he score bags of goals. 9 in 9 qualifyers for the wc qualy- then he got injured and had a bad run- just getting his form back to his best!

we have some good prospects but none of them are upto rooneys versitilyty- even if he pplays deep he is the only player to be able to pass with such awareness and accuracy!

This was the whole thing that failed us at the last World Cup. Trying to play to Rooney and we played crap.

We can't keep pinning our hopes on one player. Look at how Argentina suffered by doing the same with Messi.

We have such players as Young, Jones and Parker playing with confidence and they will be more important than Rooney come Euro 2012.


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Post by mystiroakey Sat 12 Nov 2011, 20:52

he was in such bad form at the time pal- it cant be used as evidence that rooney doenst play well for england- he gives his all and has great vision- he can fit in- and did fit in before he got injured- the stand ouyt performier in qualyfieing for the WC

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Post by mystiroakey Sat 12 Nov 2011, 20:55

the probelm was playing players that were part injured or and in bad form. yes rooney was one of them.

thruth is we have the groups first and if we are unbelivable with teh players we have then i agree rooney cant be a given- but having that option on the bench or starting in the knock outs is a must for me

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Post by legendkillar Sat 12 Nov 2011, 20:59

Pal I can use it as evidence. Slovenia, Algeria, USA and he couldn't score, yet in the Premiership plays against better defences and can score?

That to me is too inconsistent. Other players could well perform better at the Euro's given the chance.

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Post by mystiroakey Sat 12 Nov 2011, 21:04

legend as i said he had a terrible last month to the premiership after the injury then proceed toplay terrible in the wc, he then played badly for united for the next few months- then he got his form back about 1 year ago!

during the time he was on form before the inujy he scored 9 in 9 for england and 30 odd for united. he was in form then out of form- rooney isnt a good for club bad for england player and never has been.

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Post by Guest Sat 12 Nov 2011, 21:09

i know people dont rate peter crouch...

but his international goal scoring record is remarkable....

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Post by mystiroakey Sat 12 Nov 2011, 21:14

yep its good - no one in the game rates him highly at all- i think its due to the fact that the team has to play a certain way to utilise him- truth is tho what a plan b !! should have been utilsed more at top teams and england as a sub!

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Post by Guest Sat 12 Nov 2011, 21:17

cricketfan90 wrote:i know people dont rate peter crouch...

but his international goal scoring record is remarkable....

It is against third rate countries, yes.

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Post by Guest Sat 12 Nov 2011, 21:18

well if he was given a chance against the higher nations then he might do the same, i think he should get a go.

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Post by Guest Sat 12 Nov 2011, 21:20

I think he's had his time cricks. He was to some degree a good option to use off the bench but I really can't see Capello picking him again.


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Post by Guest Sat 12 Nov 2011, 21:23

well its a shame if he dosent get a go to be honest lol

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Post by Mad for Chelsea Sun 13 Nov 2011, 00:16

I always thought it was a shame Crouch doesn't play more for England, but Capello obviously doesn't rate him highly enough. Rooney for all his talent is very much hot and cold in an England shirt, but I'd take him as part of the squad anyway.

As for today, England did what all teams should do when playing Spain, force them wide to attack with their FBs, and make them cross the ball into the area, which they're not happy doing. Much the same way you stop Barca. Don't bother about their superior possession, but pressure them in the last 35 meters or so (don't run after the ball in their half). Then take your chances (and once again Lamps was in the right place at the right time to do so).

Very good performance. Don't buy into all this "only a friendly" rubbish. Had Spain won the media would have been creaming themselves over the "beautiful football", now it'll be "it's not that meaningful".

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Post by Guest Sun 13 Nov 2011, 00:27

Mad for Chelsea wrote:I always thought it was a shame Crouch doesn't play more for England, but Capello obviously doesn't rate him highly enough. Rooney for all his talent is very much hot and cold in an England shirt, but I'd take him as part of the squad anyway.

As for today, England did what all teams should do when playing Spain, force them wide to attack with their FBs, and make them cross the ball into the area, which they're not happy doing. Much the same way you stop Barca. Don't bother about their superior possession, but pressure them in the last 35 meters or so (don't run after the ball in their half). Then take your chances (and once again Lamps was in the right place at the right time to do so).

Very good performance. Don't buy into all this "only a friendly" rubbish. Had Spain won the media would have been creaming themselves over the "beautiful football", now it'll be "it's not that meaningful".

Do you take friendlies seriously then?

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Post by Mad for Chelsea Sun 13 Nov 2011, 00:39

FreekShow wrote:
Mad for Chelsea wrote:I always thought it was a shame Crouch doesn't play more for England, but Capello obviously doesn't rate him highly enough. Rooney for all his talent is very much hot and cold in an England shirt, but I'd take him as part of the squad anyway.

As for today, England did what all teams should do when playing Spain, force them wide to attack with their FBs, and make them cross the ball into the area, which they're not happy doing. Much the same way you stop Barca. Don't bother about their superior possession, but pressure them in the last 35 meters or so (don't run after the ball in their half). Then take your chances (and once again Lamps was in the right place at the right time to do so).

Very good performance. Don't buy into all this "only a friendly" rubbish. Had Spain won the media would have been creaming themselves over the "beautiful football", now it'll be "it's not that meaningful".

Do you take friendlies seriously then?

Yes, upto a point. England this evening stopped Spain from scoring, and more importantly from creating more than one or two meaningful openings. That to me is meaningful.

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Post by legendkillar Sun 13 Nov 2011, 00:39

Well 2 teams showed up, a referee, 2 linesmen and some fans did too.

Must've been something not so serious going elsewhere

Someone enlighten me

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Post by User Name Sun 13 Nov 2011, 10:07

legendkillar wrote:Pal I can use it as evidence. Slovenia, Algeria, USA and he couldn't score, yet in the Premiership plays against better defences and can score?

Maybe because he has better players around him than what he gets with the England squad.

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Post by monty junior Sun 13 Nov 2011, 11:57

That's now four friendlies have lost since the world cup, is it me or are they slipping.. they had a comfortable qualifying group but they don't seem great against the better sides just now. I have a feeling the Euro's will be Germany's time, a team who scores 2, 3, 4 goals a match has to be worth a punt.

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Post by Guest Sun 13 Nov 2011, 12:03

I don't think the Spanish team that turn up to friendlies will be similar to that in the tournament. Even last night I was expecting Spain to take it up a gear that we all know they were capable of. I still think that the top teams will be Holland, Spain and Germany, but the way the seeds will turn out it could be that we see Holland/Spain vs Germany in the first knockout round.

Whoever mentioned Crouch, he wouldn't be in my 23 man squad, far too many better strikers available.

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Post by legendkillar Sun 13 Nov 2011, 13:07

I don't think England allowed Spain to get back into the game. The last 20 minutes saw Spain find gaps in the final half of the pitch. I think England tired towards the end. That is a testament to the work ethic required to compete against Spain on the pitch.

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Post by AberdeenSteve Sun 13 Nov 2011, 13:29

I can't believe the media are hailing this as a famous victory. Please....

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Post by User Name Sun 13 Nov 2011, 14:05

The media always get a hard on for the England team.

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Post by legendkillar Sun 13 Nov 2011, 16:37

I wouldn't call it a famous victory.

Just a good start is all.

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Post by Guest Sun 13 Nov 2011, 16:47

I think the defensive discipline was most welcome, but perhaps if this victory had came in a competitive game we'd all be much more positive. I still think we'll struggle to qualify out of our group if we get some of the tougher teams, but it's great to see an England team that can hold its shape and do a shut-out job. Point on Sunday Supplement was whether Rooney or Gerrard would have played as disciplined? For me, Gerrard doesn't make my 23 man squad for 2012 as it stands.

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Post by legendkillar Sun 13 Nov 2011, 17:58

That is an interesting point. Rooney for club yes could be that disciplined, though has yet to show it at international level. I think Gerrard could if he was in a 5 man midfield. I can't wait to see how plans shape up for Euro 2012.

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Post by dyrewolfe Mon 14 Nov 2011, 15:48

For me it was just nice to see England playing to a plan and executing it well. Hats off to Capello and the lads.

A workmanlike performance for most of the game, with the odd bit of flair in attack and better ball retention than I've seen for a while.

As others have commented, we weren't especially brilliant, but the tactics Fabio came up with effectively stifled Spain's creativity and even forced them to chase the game at times.

The goal was a tad lucky, but came from a good attacking move and a great header from Bent that was inches away from going in. Credit to Lampard for putting himself in the right place to nod in the deflection.

England were never going to dazzle in an attacking sense against Spain and it seemed to me Capello set our stall out as if were were playing them in a tournament, with tactics and formation designed to get a result, rather than entertain. So overall, well done lads (and manager) but lets leave the hysteria well alone for now.

If this had been a competitive game, I can't help but feel the outcome would have been different.
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Post by dancingweeman Mon 14 Nov 2011, 16:14

Churchill wrote:Whoever mentioned Crouch, he wouldn't be in my 23 man squad, far too many better strikers available.

I'd far rather take Crouch than Agbonlahor, Zamora or even Carroll.

He wouldn't be a starter, but keep him in there to have as an option. I think i'd rather bring someone on who's scored 20-odd goals for England than someone like Zamora.

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Post by Guest Mon 14 Nov 2011, 16:30

Who do you drop from Rooney, Bent, Sturridge and Welbeck? Considering that we're more likely to play 1 upfront it'd be mad to take 5 strikers, especially when the wingers like Walcott and Young are also options.

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Post by dancingweeman Mon 14 Nov 2011, 17:22

Thats true - you make a good point.

To be honest i wouldn't take Crouch above any of the 4 you mentioned, if we only take 4 strikers then barring injury or a drastic loss of form then thats who we take.

But if any of them are unavailable come June i'd have Crouch as the next man in over the others that have been floating around the recent squads.

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Post by Guest Mon 14 Nov 2011, 17:26

If someone was unavailable then it'd be a tough call. Capello's ignored Crouch for the majority of his reign as manager, Zamora/Carroll seem to be the preferred big men. Just hope those 4 make it to the tournament unscathed though.

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