World Cup 2018 - Rossiya

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Re: World Cup 2018 - Rossiya

Postby Diamond Dog » 12 Jul 2018, 08:06

How I see it... you do one or the other, not fall inbetween two stools. You either press from high up the pitch and play a high line to compress the area you need to press - or, like France, you concede territory and sit ten outfield players behind the ball and make the other team play through you. We got caught doing a bit of one and the other - the worst possible combination of dropping deeper and deeper, but still trying to press the ball. It's no wonder they got tired - they were trying to 'police' an area twice as deep as it should have been.

The reason? A bit of inexperience certainly and also that crucial lack of an 'out'.... either a target man we could get forward and support quickly, or (more crucially) a midfield player you could give the ball to and say "Take this for ten seconds please" and give the defence a chance to push up and compress the space.

We all knew we didn't have that player - so we ended up playing the long ball forward and hoping it stuck - and last night it didn't. So it was coming back at us before we'd had the chance to get the back three/five 15/20 yards up the pitch. Which meant Croatia had lots of room when they got the ball - and you give people like Modric and Rakatic space to play, they'll get to you eventually.

What we should have done was swallow the pill and try to play the way France did in the second half against Belgium - get everyone back behind the ball (including Kane and Sterling/Rashford) and make Croatia play through ten outfield players. That was our best chance - but it didn't feel like we were prepared to accept that challenge. It's just not something English teams are very comfortable doing. But we need to get used to it - or find a midfield player who can do the kind of thing that Modric has done all his career - hold onto the ball and buy the team time.

The manager and players will learn - I have no doubts about that. They can be rightly proud of their showing here - especially in light of where we were when Southgate took over officially (which was only November 2016, let's not forget). We've come a long way - but there's a long way to go still. At least we've got a manager who looks like he has a clue, who the players trust and believe in and who the fans have taken to as well. And there is a good nucleus of young players already in place, with more to come.

I'm very optimistic.
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Re: World Cup 2018 - Rossiya

Postby caramba » 12 Jul 2018, 08:41

Diamond Dog wrote:The 3rd/4th place play off is a complete and utter waste of time. It shouldn't be played. And if I was the manager of players likely to be playing in it, i'd be doing everything in my power to get them not to play in it.


People have been saying as such for years. Can't understand why they still bother as it's a game hardly anyone wants to play in or watch.

Aside from giving Harry K the chance to improve his chances of winning the Golden Boot, this year's non-event's only distinction lies in its being a repeat of WC 2018''s most turgid and pointless group game

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Re: World Cup 2018 - Rossiya

Postby Rayge » 12 Jul 2018, 08:51

caramba wrote:Aside from giving Harry K the chance to improve his chances of winning the Golden Boot

The only way he doesn't get at least a share of it is for Mbappe or Griezman to score four, or three plus an 'assist' in the final.
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Re: World Cup 2018 - Rossiya

Postby caramba » 12 Jul 2018, 08:55

Pretty much agree with everything written above.

Think having survived the beginnings of Croatia's late first half comeback and deserved but not awarded penalty just before half time, England experienced a collective Wile-E-Coyote moment. Suddenly realising how far they'd come and how close they were, the team froze and fell back to earth with a bump.

While the referee was shite, Croatia were by far the better team and thoroughly deserved their win. As someone said elsewhere, it was England and not them who looked as if they'd done two lots of extra time and pens

Still kudos to Gareth S and the team for the wild ride they took everyone on in making people feel proud about the England team again. The fact that they were able to vanquish so many ghosts from the past (penalty shoot outs, etc) along the way is just the icing on the cake. If a good attacking midfielder emerges in the next couple of years, they're going to be a real force at the 2020 Euros and 2022 WCs.

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Re: World Cup 2018 - Rossiya

Postby caramba » 12 Jul 2018, 08:57

Rayge wrote:
caramba wrote:Aside from giving Harry K the chance to improve his chances of winning the Golden Boot

The only way he doesn't get at least a share of it is for Mbappe or Griezman to score four, or three plus an 'assist' in the final.


Jesus, didn't realize he was that far ahead. Still doubt whether I'll do more than watch the MOTD highlights show though

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Re: World Cup 2018 - Rossiya

Postby Diamond Dog » 12 Jul 2018, 09:02

Rayge wrote:
caramba wrote:Aside from giving Harry K the chance to improve his chances of winning the Golden Boot

The only way he doesn't get at least a share of it is for Mbappe or Griezman to score four, or three plus an 'assist' in the final.


Or Lukaku to score two.
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Re: World Cup 2018 - Rossiya

Postby Goat Boy » 12 Jul 2018, 09:20

When Croatia applied the pressure England didn’t have any answers in the second half. It was the same in the opening game after Tunisia’s fortuitous equaliser but there they were rescued by Kane’s last minute goal. You saw a similar thing against Colombia but they didn’t have the players to exploit them in Rodriguez’s absence. Having said that that opening half was the best I’ve seen from England this world cup and Croatia looked under the cosh but then good sides adapt and find a way. Experience helps massively of course in games like that but I still feel there was a lack of footballing intelligence on the pitch from England last night which is a recurring issue. Tactics are important, of course they are, but players and teams organically manage themselves on the pitch too but maybe that will come with time. I always felt that England’s midfield would be found out at some point though but thanks to the draw and a bit of luck it didn’t happen until last night. Croatia stepped it up, Modric took control and they realised that it would probably be better to target England’s left flank rather than their right (Trippier was excellent as he has been the whole tournament and Walker provided the cover). As soon as that happened there was a feeling of inevitability about it I thought but I still felt that Croatia needed to win it during 90s mins. I kept expecting them to physically weaken, and they did, a little bit in extra time but they still managed to score thanks to John Stones falling asleep. As soon as that happened you knew it was game over and England were broken in the last ten minutes. At one point Tyldesley said “Dier” and his voice sounded pathetic and childlike and you could tell even he knew it was over. I can’t deny I took pleasure in that moment. I hate that cunt.

There’s been a lot of hype and a lot of praise for this England side and generally speaking it has been deserved. They have done magnificently to come back from the debacles of recent tournaments and Big Sams appointment. Southgate and his team have created a team, unified players, given them a vision and maximised their strengths. It was enough to take them to the semi-final of the world cup and give a nation hope. That’s huge. And yet.....in the cold light of day they will know that was their best chance of making a final since 1990 and, probably, their best chance of actually winning it since 1966. They might never get a better chance and their half of the draw will almost certainly never open up in the way it did here. It really felt like the stars were aligning. They are a limited team. They really lack creativity and have been largely dependent on set pieces although they are not alone in that respect this world cup; it’s not been a great tournament for creative team play. Like others have noted, they need a Modric, a player who can boss the game in the centre of the park, dictate the play and tempo and they don’t have that. Wilshere may have provided some of that, who knows, and maybe he can still be the answer but I suspect not. I don’t see any young players coming through who can be that player but maybe somebody might emerge. Truthfully the premiership is not suited to producing that kind of player; too fast, too physical, not enough time on the ball so if they do appear they will be an anomaly.

They came into this tournament as an unknown team but now everybody knows what they are about and knows their strengths and weaknesses. They will be studied and will have to come up with new ideas. I don’t buy this notion that they are now “challengers” as Tyldesley said either. It’s not like other teams will stand still. France will improve, one would assume the likes of Spain and Germany will too and won’t be this bad again for a while. They are certainly on the up though but I would not be as hopeful as some might be. I think several players in that team are not going to be what you need at the very top level but perhaps they might kick on. I would include Sterling in that by the way. If I hear another witless cunt sing "footballs coming home" again in my lifetime it will be too soon.

Seriously well done to Croatia though, especially after the last two games. I kept expecting them to wilt but they didn’t and the psychological and physical pressure actually impacted on England more. It’s great seeing such a small nation do so well and maybe they have exorcised some of the ghosts of ’98 there. I would like them to win now but France must be strong favourites. That’s a side that could be really going places and there are rumours that Zidane is going to manage them after the world cup too.
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Re: World Cup 2018 - Rossiya

Postby Toby » 12 Jul 2018, 09:22

France have the players to have a chance of retaining it in 4 years too. I'd like Croatia to win, but can't see it happening.

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Re: World Cup 2018 - Rossiya

Postby Diamond Dog » 12 Jul 2018, 09:23

Good post Goatboy.
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Re: World Cup 2018 - Rossiya

Postby Goat Boy » 12 Jul 2018, 09:39

Another thing….when was the last time you could say England had any players who could conceivably be the player of the tournament in their position?

Trippier at right back surprised me. Fantastic tournament with some real quality from the flank. Walkers injury last night didn’t help by the way. Once he couldn’t provide that cover as he had done so effectively it really pinned Trippier back.

Pickford has stepped up and looks a proper keeper. He made some magnificent saves and last night again too. That save from Mandzukic that came off his leg was fantastic.

Maguire’s slab head has that wonderful centre half habit of seemingly attracting the ball due to unseen forces. Did he miss a header the whole tournament?


Did anybody see Roy Keane and Ian Wright last night? Hilarious!
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Re: World Cup 2018 - Rossiya

Postby PENK » 12 Jul 2018, 09:50

caramba wrote:this year's non-event's only distinction lies in its being a repeat of WC 2018''s most turgid and pointless group game


You evidently didn’t watch France and Denmark attempting the mannequin challenge for 90 minutes.
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Re: World Cup 2018 - Rossiya

Postby slightbreeze » 12 Jul 2018, 10:00

Diamond Dog wrote:
slightbreeze wrote:
Darkness_Fish wrote:Problem with the midfield being lost is that we bolstered it by not playing anyone up front. That's an indication of our limitations.

We didn't lose the midfield because we never had one. Southgate employed Wimbledon tactics of the late 80's by just hoofing the ball up field and hoping Kane (who was awful) and Sterling would latch onto it. Realistically, if we'd have finished top of the group, we'd have been out long before tonight. However, one thing we did manage to achieve though was, the further we progressed, the lower world ranked team we played, some going considering we were ranked 12th :!:


Yeah, that fucking idiot Southgate - who the fuck game him the job! :roll: For why it's called 'The Impossible Job' read the above from Slightbreeze.
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Defender Sime Vrsaljko also had his say on England, saying the perception that Southgate's side had changed their style was incorrect.

"The all-round perception was that this is a new-look England who have changed their ways of punting long balls upfield but when we pressed them it turned out that they haven't," Vrsaljko said.

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Re: World Cup 2018 - Rossiya

Postby caramba » 12 Jul 2018, 10:04

PENK wrote:
caramba wrote:this year's non-event's only distinction lies in its being a repeat of WC 2018''s most turgid and pointless group game


You evidently didn’t watch France and Denmark attempting the mannequin challenge for 90 minutes.


No, I had that one pegged as a re-order my shoes and sort my socks out night well before kick off.

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Re: World Cup 2018 - Rossiya

Postby caramba » 12 Jul 2018, 10:09

Goat Boy wrote:

Did anybody see Roy Keane and Ian Wright last night? Hilarious!




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Re: World Cup 2018 - Rossiya

Postby Goat Boy » 12 Jul 2018, 10:17

slightbreeze wrote:
Diamond Dog wrote:
slightbreeze wrote:We didn't lose the midfield because we never had one. Southgate employed Wimbledon tactics of the late 80's by just hoofing the ball up field and hoping Kane (who was awful) and Sterling would latch onto it. Realistically, if we'd have finished top of the group, we'd have been out long before tonight. However, one thing we did manage to achieve though was, the further we progressed, the lower world ranked team we played, some going considering we were ranked 12th :!:


Yeah, that fucking idiot Southgate - who the fuck game him the job! :roll: For why it's called 'The Impossible Job' read the above from Slightbreeze.
You ought to hang your head in shame.


.


Defender Sime Vrsaljko also had his say on England, saying the perception that Southgate's side had changed their style was incorrect.

"The all-round perception was that this is a new-look England who have changed their ways of punting long balls upfield but when we pressed them it turned out that they haven't," Vrsaljko said.


I think there is some truth in that but an exaggeration too. You saw it most starkly when they went 2-1 down and it was just long, hopeful balls. All the composure had gone but then you are 2-1 down with ten minutes to go in a world cup semi AND you're an inexperienced team it's easy to panic.

When you're under the cosh a bit, as they were increasingly as the game went on you need players who can receive the ball, hold the ball, take the sting out of the game and then distribute accordingly. Henderson is not that kind of player, none of their midfield really is and because they were sitting too deep the gap between them and forwards was too big anyway. To be fair though with the pace of Sterling up front there was always a chance a long ball over the top could work mind so it wasn't without logic but you have to play percentages in those situations. If possible.
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Re: World Cup 2018 - Rossiya

Postby joklend » 12 Jul 2018, 12:28

Pansy Puff wrote:
joklend wrote:I really want to like Raheem Sterling but he offered nothing. Every attack fizzled out through him.

I disagree. Sterling caused them all sorts of problems. Way more than Kane, who underperformed last night, and way more than Rashford when he came on.
England as a team were outperformed and controlled by a very strong team, but it's lazy to try and blame Sterling.


I'm not blaming him, but what chances did he create? What shots did he have?

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Re: World Cup 2018 - Rossiya

Postby jimboo » 12 Jul 2018, 18:10

Yeah , but scaring the back four wasn't what was required.Actually beating someone ,creating space and scoring would have been better. Everyone is looking forward to the Euro's now.I wonder how they will fare against the world champions , losing finalist and the team that beat them in their group?
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Re: World Cup 2018 - Rossiya

Postby Diamond Dog » 12 Jul 2018, 18:39

jimboo wrote:Yeah , but scaring the back four wasn't what was required.Actually beating someone ,creating space and scoring would have been better. Everyone is looking forward to the Euro's now.I wonder how they will fare against the world champions , losing finalist and the team that beat them in their group?


Who knows? Does that detract from what was achieved here then?
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Re: World Cup 2018 - Rossiya

Postby jimboo » 12 Jul 2018, 21:08

Diamond Dog wrote:
jimboo wrote:Yeah , but scaring the back four wasn't what was required.Actually beating someone ,creating space and scoring would have been better. Everyone is looking forward to the Euro's now.I wonder how they will fare against the world champions , losing finalist and the team that beat them in their group?


Who knows? Does that detract from what was achieved here then?


What has been achieved though , a lot of finally backing the team and actually getting behind the manager for once by the press aside , It doesn't fall on Sterling that England didn't take the opportunity to be in the final. It's two shots on target , it's surrendering midfield , long balls and this strange notion that set pieces are the best plan when it comes to winning matches.Last gasp against Tunisia , penalties against Columbia who , it should be said , when they played football had England on the ropes , Columbia in this thread were criticised because they lacked a finisher and a passer who could add the finishing touch needed (both lacking in the current England team , yet there are so many improvements/positives)Sweden were paraded as a well drilled awkward side , they lacked drive ,invention or anything resembling a goal threat.England played well in the first half against Croatia with the set piece theory proving it's worth to the advocates of the new method. They then reverted to type in the second half with the ball going longer and the gap between midfield and attack becoming an unbreachable chasm. Sterling , who was causing all the trouble for Croatia was replaced.

Taking the games on an individual basis , nothing suggests an immediate Euro winning performance. The reserve team game against Belgium suggests there is not the depth on the bench. Englands golden generation failed and I thought the last world cup should have been used to ease in a new generation. This team did the best they could , given the successes of the England youth teams the future may be brighter. To win the world cup or the Euros though means less hyperbole and didn't they do well considering chatter, turned into killing the opposition , being ruthless and finding out how to get the ball to players who will take chances rather than just worry defenders.Croatia upped the ante in a way that England never looked capable of.

England got themselves to the semi final , the easy draw , if you indeed think it was, is still a massive achievement , but how can you go from it's coming home and we are going to the final and, follow it with , well done lads , we wouldn't have beaten France anyway, coupled with the second half of hoofball and being pegged back deeper and deeper praying for a corner or a free kick outside the box?
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Re: World Cup 2018 - Rossiya

Postby jimboo » 12 Jul 2018, 21:09

Pansy Puff wrote:
jimboo wrote:Yeah , but scaring the back four wasn't what was required.Actually beating someone ,creating space and scoring would have been better.

But why single him out? Rashford, Lingard, Ali, Kane, all invisible. At least Sterling put a shift in.


I am not blaming him. If so many went missing then why all the headlines about lions and heroes?
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