Re: England vs Croatia Match Thread

J replying to QBBC2
08:16, Thursday 12 Jul 2018
I'm not saying we should have done anything differently but in almost every game, we have been in total control only to let the other team back in.

During those points where we have been under pressure, I can't recall a substitution that wasn't like for like (Henderson off for Dier, Sterling off for Rashford), or any change in play whatsoever. The best managers can turn the tide of a game with their substitutions.

That said, for the first time since I was about 12 I'm feeling very proud of England and I'm optimistic that Southgate will grow this style of play which has been a joy to watch when we have been in control. I'm sure he will grow tactically, too.
Cheery Chappy Charcy
People who read books are mugs. If it is good enough it will be on TV.
Messages
Go to top
Reply
Tweet Topic
Quote

Re: England vs Croatia Match Thread

J replying to newblue
08:20, Thursday 12 Jul 2018
Try not to get upset. We lost to the weakest semi-finalists we will likely ever face after beating the mighty Sweden, an injury stricken Colombia and scraping past Tunisia. I won't mention the pub team.
Cheery Chappy Charcy
People who read books are mugs. If it is good enough it will be on TV.
Messages
Go to top
Reply
Tweet Topic
Quote

Re: England vs Croatia Match Thread

Moneyball replying to J
08:45, Thursday 12 Jul 2018
Southgate, for all of the good work he has done, has reminded me of McLeish in his Blues days at crucial times during this tournament i.e. we're in a good position, he's utterly terrified of making a change and when he does, it's a fairly negative one that only seems to help the opposition.

The first warning sign came against Colombia where, after being the better side for around 65 minutes, it's pretty clear we needed fresh legs to regain the momentum. He dillys, he dallys, and then eventually brings Dier on. Colombian tails go up as they can see we're trying to shut up shop, they get the equaliser and very nearly the winner in ET. We forget that near miss due to the joy of a penalty win.

And then last night. We batter them in the first half and then look like a different team in the second - we were happy to give them the ball, let them attack and reduce our chances to the counter. He made one change in the 90 minutes- an attacker for an attacker - before using two others to bring on a left back and Dier - again! Who knows if it would have been different, but I and many others thought we were desperate for the impressive Loftus-Cheek to give us a bit more ability in midfield (where we were losing the game) as Dier added nothing - as it was, RLC warmed the bench and Croatia could have won by more.

His options admittedly were not great on the bench but whose fault is that? The lack of 'ball-playing' midfielder (be it Shelvey, Wilshire, Lallanna etc) was a huge concern pre-tournament, and reappeared massively during the Colombia game (when Kane kept dropping deep into midfield) and more starkly last night. Wilshire, for all the stick he gets, would have been a great option to have last night to slow the game down and help us regain some control. As it was, we resorted to Dier and the game only got worse. Disappointing mistakes to make.
Messages
Go to top
Reply
Tweet Topic
Quote

Re: England vs Croatia Match Thread

number8 replying to Moneyball
09:16, Thursday 12 Jul 2018
Wilshere did nothing to deserve to go.

We far, far exceeded what anyone expected at this tournament. And they did it by being a team, with a plan - all the "no plan B" stuff falls down on the fact that we really didn't have much other than the first 11.

England are like Blues - if we had a proper midfielder we would be very decent. Lets hope someone steps up for euro 20, but even if we don't grow one, we still have the basis of a team that can challenge.

We lost last night to the better team on the night who have 2 of the top 5 midfielders in the world playing for them.
Thongs
Number8 is the worlds best forum poster. FACT. End of chat.
Messages
Go to top
Reply
Tweet Topic
Quote

Re: England vs Croatia Match Thread

DES replying to number8
09:29, Thursday 12 Jul 2018
number 8,
spot on mate, we need a midfielder who can create and be the difference, i thought Dele was the man, but totally anonymous last night, Im not heartbrokem but with time Im sure we will all think this was great opportunity missed!
Henderson had impressed throughout but his long passing in particular last night was poor.
With hindsight we could all pick different players but I had no problems with the starting 11 and clearly Southgate isn't one for big sub changes (which I have no problem with)
one bonus from competition, my felow director (the clever one) found a web site where you could book plane seats with 15 hr cancellation period PHEW!!

KRO
Messages
Go to top
Reply
Tweet Topic
Quote

Re: England vs Croatia Match Thread

Moneyball replying to number8
09:44, Thursday 12 Jul 2018
So what did Loftus-Cheek do to deserve his place? Dier? Rose? Hey let's go one further, Danny Welbeck? None of these players pulled up trees last season, and yet were on the plane.

As it is, Wilshire played most of last season injury free and has something all of our other players lack. A good squad is about balance and we didn't have ONE centre-mid who always wants the ball with a good range of passing. If not Wilshire, why not Shelvey who had a blinder of a season? I fail to see an adequate line of defence for taking such an abundance of full backs (like Alexander Arnold/Delph etc) and not one creative midfielder.

Now I'll preface my next point by saying I'm not usually a misery-guts/kill-joy type. I'm not really a prolific poster on here but my comment history should attest to this.

But I'm not buying into this 'I'm proud of the boys/we exceeded expectations' crap being bandied about. The teams of old who are ridiculed by the media usually went out to the likes of Portugal and Germany, as we came up against them earlier in the tournament. As it is, this team had to beat Tunisia, Panama, a James-less Colomobia and a very poor Swedish side to get to the semis. We were huge favourites for every match and, had we lost any of them, there would be complete uproar about how woeful we were. There's no middle ground. My view is, fair play for 'meeting' expectations. I appreciate the quarters were the target pre-tournament, but if we were given that fixture list beforehand I'm sure absolutely everyone would 'expect' to reach the semis - probably the final actually, listening to how Croatia were summarily dismissed as an easy win by all and sundry yesterday.
Messages
Go to top
Reply
Tweet Topic
Quote

Re: England vs Croatia Match Thread

JohnP replying to DES
09:44, Thursday 12 Jul 2018
I'm hoping that some of the youngsters from the U17 and U19 world champion sides can come through and get into the senior side in a few years time. That midfielder who plays for Man City looks just what we need if he can make progress. It looks like we are becoming a decent team though. Watching Sweden reminded me of England in the past but we have definitely moved on from that.
Messages
Go to top
Reply
Tweet Topic
Quote

Re: England vs Croatia Match Thread

number8 replying to Moneyball
09:53, Thursday 12 Jul 2018
The others you mention had been available throughout qualifying. Wilshere wasn't fit for the March games and only sporadically started for Arsenal. He really isn't all that, hence he has gone on a free to West Ham, where half decent players from the South East go to retire.

Shelvey maybe had an argument to be on the plane but I'm guessing the fact he's a bit of a dick may have had something to do with it. Like it or not, team/squad spirit was a massive factor in getting so far so if Southgate didn't want to upset that, fair enough.

I didn't see anyone with half a brain dismissing Croatia. If you are dissatisfied by that team getting to the semis, I honestly don't know how you cope being a Blues fan.

If you can't be proud of the teams achievement, maybe they don't deserve you watching them
Thongs
Number8 is the worlds best forum poster. FACT. End of chat.
Messages
Go to top
Reply
Tweet Topic
Quote

Re: England vs Croatia Match Thread

zxcv replying to mr_crosby
10:08, Thursday 12 Jul 2018
B62, The future is bright

spionkop, I think that is way to harsh

Des, We have to remember this was a whole new set up including the Management team, Gareth will reflect and this tournament will make him also a better Manager, i think he learn that maybe you can`t just have kids and every manager in the prem will tell him exactly that.

But this has been a real massive learning curve for all of them, some wern`t even Born fgs in 1990. I would have liked to have seen the two changes i mentioned earlier ie Welbeck for Sterling but for me the squad was wrong hence why we could only change like for like from the bench, and that does not lend itself to playing more than one formation. four good experienced players to come off the bench to match Croatia yet keep the kids enthusiasm going could have seen us through.
Messages
Go to top
Reply
Tweet Topic
Quote

Re: England vs Croatia Match Thread

DES replying to number8
10:16, Thursday 12 Jul 2018
number8
The others you mention had been available throughout qualifying. Wilshere wasn't fit for the March games and only sporadically started for Arsenal. He really isn't all that, hence he has gone on a free to West Ham, where half decent players from the South East go to retire.

Shelvey maybe had an argument to be on the plane but I'm guessing the fact he's a bit of a dick may have had something to do with it. Like it or not, team/squad spirit was a massive factor in getting so far so if Southgate didn't want to upset that, fair enough.

I didn't see anyone with half a brain dismissing Croatia. If you are dissatisfied by that team getting to the semis, I honestly don't know how you cope being a Blues fan.

If you can't be proud of the teams achievement, maybe they don't deserve you watching them
Number 8, your getting more sensible by each post!
Totally agree!
Being a blues fan with our unique branding..WE STRIVE FOR MEDIOCRITY! I see supporting England almost as moving up to another level!
Never forget thoae two games under Zola when Rotherham battered us (but we drew) then Burton humiliated us at home, so losing in et to Croatia is actually operating on a different stratosphere!

KRO
Messages
Go to top
Reply
Tweet Topic
Quote

Re: England vs Croatia Match Thread

TrevorFrancisTrackSuits replying to zxcv
10:18, Thursday 12 Jul 2018
so many people overthinking it

a unified young and inexperienced team lost out in a close game against a well matched opposition

could have gone englands way but it didnt, thats football

cest la vie
Messages
Go to top
Reply
Tweet Topic
Quote

Re: England vs Croatia Match Thread

Black 'N' Blue replying to Moneyball
10:20, Thursday 12 Jul 2018
Moneyball,

What an absolutely superb post.. thumbs up
Messages
Go to top
Reply
Tweet Topic
Quote

Re: England vs Croatia Match Thread

Moneyball replying to number8
10:26, Thursday 12 Jul 2018
Ha, being a Blues fan has allowed me to look at this objectively! Funnily enough, a lot of England fans and pundits reminded me of the vilers in the build up to yesterday - all but convinced of victory and 'it's coming home' etc - you only have to look at the reaction from around the world who think we deserved our comeuppance. Even Mbappe has stuck the boot in!

Listen, I'm not pist off with the team, more satisfied. Getting this far has been great and winning a shoot-out was one of the moments of the year. But I just can't get on board this 'Southgate should be given a ten-year contract, this team is amazing' stuff when we only beat teams who we should be beating every time. Colombia were the sternest test but apart from a half-decent attacking 3 (Quintero, Cuadrado and Falcao) are no where near our level - didn't they have that useless villa player in midfield? Even then, we made a mighty meal of it but as I said, worth it for the penalty euphoria.

If we'd beaten a Croatia, a Uruguay or indeed a Portugal en route I'd be more inclined to join the 'what a great team' hysteria, but this was a case of 'same old England' for me, losing to the first really good team we played.
Messages
Go to top
Reply
Tweet Topic
Quote

Re: England vs Croatia Match Thread

cowinbovril replying to Moneyball
10:31, Thursday 12 Jul 2018
Lighten up folks; it's a new day.

[www.youtube.com]
Messages
Go to top
Reply
Tweet Topic
Quote

Re: England vs Croatia Match Thread

Saga Noren replying to Moneyball
10:34, Thursday 12 Jul 2018
They did very well given their relative experience.

We had no one like Modric, Isco, Iniesta, Pogba, Konte or Casemiro in midfield and had to play in a way that relied on the athleticism, movement and dynamism of our players. And it is a bit like the Blues, unfortunately, in that having a lack of skill and guile in the middle undermines any team.
Wigan Pier.
Messages
Go to top
Reply
Tweet Topic
Quote

Re: England vs Croatia Match Thread

Rab C Nesbitt replying to Moneyball
10:37, Thursday 12 Jul 2018
Well thought out posts, moneyball.
You should post more often
Fat Buddha - 'Rab C Nesbitt. He's a contrary fecker, but invariably right. He has his finger on the motherfecking pulse.'
Messages
Go to top
Reply
Tweet Topic
Quote

Re: England vs Croatia Match Thread

number8 replying to Moneyball
10:37, Thursday 12 Jul 2018
You're going to get people going over the top with England - both ways - but I think the vast majority were optimistic rather than jingoistic and were swept up in a new attitude and effort that at least attempted to move us forward. And eventually I think it has.

Southgate proved me and many others wrong, but I agree we just need to be sensible and see how the next campaign goes - I imagine he himself has already set out where he needs to improve, and hopefully this experience will help.

Colombia were a half decent side. And remember England hadn't beaten Sweden for god knows how long yet were really comfortable against them. No one in this world cup has been outstanding, and I think international football is currently closer than it ever has been. I reckon you could re-run this tournament with the same squads next month and get a different set of quarter finalists very easily.

We were close to beating Croatia for a place in the World Cup Final. I'm going to take that as an achievement and for the first time in a long time, I'm hopeful for the next tournament.

Which we now won't qualify for...;)
Thongs
Number8 is the worlds best forum poster. FACT. End of chat.
Messages
Go to top
Reply
Tweet Topic
Quote

Re: England vs Croatia Match Thread

A_n_E replying to Moneyball
10:38, Thursday 12 Jul 2018
Moneyball
but this was a case of 'same old England' for me, losing to the first really good team we played.

actually no, the same old england would have capitulated before the semi finals.

these are young kids in the main, we are a modric type player away from being a very good side, we played good football and didnt have to resort to just aimlessly lumping the ball up front (aside from the 2nd half yesterday) in our games. we played with a smile on our faces and got people back behind the team, there was no snarling rooney moaning about fans booing, there was no petulant beckham getting sent off, there was no penalty shoot out failure.

the backbone of this team will hopefully be together for another 3 tournaments (2 euros and another WC) and will benefit from the experience of this tournament. and with players coming through from the world champions at under 17, 19 etc the future looks good for us.

it's easy to say we should have reached the semis based on the teams we played but remember past teams of supposedly better players had failed to beat supposed lesser teams on many occasions.

the team and manager deserve credit for putting together a team and performances that we can be proud of.

the penalty shoot out victory and the 6 goals against panama as well as the last minute winner against tunisia will live long in the memory
AnE - conspiracy theorist, ardent viler-hater, nutjob cyclist, Cubie-bater, go-to iconoclast
Messages
Go to top
Reply
Tweet Topic
Quote

Re: England vs Croatia Match Thread

Bluewurst replying to A_n_E
10:44, Thursday 12 Jul 2018
Decent summing up that thumbs up
@Bluewurst1875
Messages
Go to top
Reply
Tweet Topic
Quote

Re: England vs Croatia Match Thread

Benny S replying to Nose of Blue
10:52, Thursday 12 Jul 2018
Can't complain about last night, better team won. Had the chances but like the majority of games this tournament we haven't look like scoring in open play, set pieces got us to the semis, Kane looked shattered. Last night was the same as the Columbia match, subs changed the game for the wrong reasons, RLC deserved a run out. For me we needed that plan B up top, Welbeck shouldn't have gone and someone like Andy Carroll should of, 10 minutes left in extra time, chasing a goal, he's the type of player you need in the box with others around him.

Anyway they went a lot further than I thought they would, and for the first time in years I'm proud of what the England national team have done. Bring on the Euros! I have faith that things can only get better for this current squad.
Messages
Go to top
Reply
Tweet Topic
Quote

Re: England vs Croatia Match Thread

Tarquin replying to Moneyball
10:55, Thursday 12 Jul 2018
You are of course right. I was way more gutted when we lost to Iceland than I am this morning.

The positives I have taken is the change in style. Emphasis on bringing the ball out from the back, moving the ball between the lines supported by pace and energy. We had a plan. Southgate has made strong decisions and produced a team finally equal to the sum of it's parts. We're not a great side, we don't have the personnel to be that - but we are a good collective unit now. Not sure what more we could have expected
Sergio Lives
Messages
Go to top
Reply
Tweet Topic
Quote

Re: England vs Croatia Match Thread

Moneyball replying to A_n_E
11:07, Thursday 12 Jul 2018
Would they though? Let's be clear - this is something neither of us can prove - but it wouldn't surprise me to see the teams with Rooney, Lampard et al also reach the semis given that run of games.

In the last world cup, we had Italy and Uruguay in the group we went out of. In the one before that, we fell to Germany. In 2006 it was Portugal on pens. In Euro 2012 we lost on penalties to eventual finalists Italy. I'll concede we reached new lows with the Iceland elimination but on the whole, we are usually eliminated by the likes of Portugal, Italy, Germany and now Croatia level teams.

Sweden were more of a force historically with Ljungberg, Kallstrom, Ibra and dare I say it Mellberg (shudders). This year's team had Swedish league 2 players in its defence and an aging Seb Larsson in centre midfield. Colombia as I said were the sternest test but even they lacked their best player, and we got by on the skins of our teeth.

Fair enough if this performance makes you guys proud and I'll agree that we have a decent backbone going forward, particularly defensively. And just like Blues, we need that ever-elusive creative influence in midfield.
Messages
Go to top
Reply
Tweet Topic
Quote

Re: England vs Croatia Match Thread

Le Mod replying to Moneyball
12:21, Thursday 12 Jul 2018
Yeah tbh I'm not really buying this.. "We exceeded all expectations" stuff

We were always going to get out of the group, and the expectations were that we would be beaten in the Quarter Finals when we met Germany or Brazil, except the draw opened up because all the big teams we're shit, so our expectations adjusted accordingly.

We've lost to the first good team we faced (Colombia were ok but missing their main man) which is what usually happens, it just happened later than usual due to the bizarre nature of the tournament, we were slight favourites pre-match last night.

A decent tournament where I liked the way we played the ball out and showed some balls, and I really enjoyed the unity and excitement, but I'm not sure getting to the semi's was particularly miraculous stuff.

Ah well, hopefully we build on it, going back to focusing on Blues now and enjoying the slow death of Villa.
@LeMod1875
Messages
Go to top
Reply
Tweet Topic
Quote

Re: England vs Croatia Match Thread

WorcsAzul replying to Moneyball
12:37, Thursday 12 Jul 2018
We didn't lose to the first good team we played - that was Belgium.

Given the first half last night I was disappointed with the way we seemingly capitulated in the second half and extra time but am willing to put that down to inexperience. As the saying goes we can only beat what is put in front of us and, in that regard, the team did very well up to last night and were not far from putting Croatia to the sword too.

There are two areas where I would make minor criticisms about last night that may have contributed to the outcome:

(a) IT seems clear at least 2/3 of our players were carrying injuries into that game including Kane I believe. It might have been a time when Southgate should have considered changing a winning team (a little) as Croatia were in danger of wilting in the first half; and

(b) I thought the referee was abysmal and very weak. Lovren and Rebic should have both had yellows early on in the game and there were a couple of corners we should have had that were not awarded and several obvious fouls too. Someone said on here that not much had gone against us so far and that was true. There was a bit of catch-up last night.

Neither angry or disappointed though as Croatia are a very good team and England did us proud in this tournament. That said we are desperate for a Modric type player to knit this all together. The last 4 in this WC are all European teams and in the next tournament we can expect Italy, Germany, Spain, the Netherlands and so on to be better (or there). It is quote possible that was our best chance to win a trophy for at least a few years.

Moneyball
If we'd beaten a Croatia, a Uruguay or indeed a Portugal en route I'd be more inclined to join the 'what a great team' hysteria, but this was a case of 'same old England' for me, losing to the first really good team we played.
Messages
Go to top
Reply
Tweet Topic
Quote

Re: England vs Croatia Match Thread

Frank replying to WorcsAzul
12:48, Thursday 12 Jul 2018
:D

We lost to Belgium.
Messages
Go to top
Reply
Tweet Topic
Quote

Re: England vs Croatia Match Thread

baldrick replying to WorcsAzul
12:48, Thursday 12 Jul 2018
I think the Belgium game demonstated we didn’t have much strength in reserve
Hence, maybe, why Southgate stuck with his regulars even if they were carrying niggles?
Messages
Go to top
Reply
Tweet Topic
Quote

Re: England vs Croatia Match Thread

brierleyblue replying to Le Mod
12:52, Thursday 12 Jul 2018
I would agree that we probably achieved what we should have expected given the way the draw panned out.

One thing that has annoyed me a bit is the emphasis on inexperience. I know they were a young squad and relatively fresh to international football but other than Pickford and Maguire (arguably our 2 best players) the rest of them have been playing champions league football for the last 2 or 3 years against players of a better level than Sweden, Colombia have. Their club managers don't call them inexperienced at that level and say not to expect too much from them.

I guess we could do with having a bit more know how so we can only improve going forward in the next 4 years. I just hope that the media stays sensible and don't start saying only the semi finals will do next time and put the pressure back on.

And also that creative midfielder. Given that he's going to be moving on I might get away with saying this without getting too much flak. I wonder if Grealish could develop over the next 4 years to become that player. If nothing else we are strong at set pieces so he'd win us a load of free kicks!

Anyway that was a bit of fun to pass the summer let's get back to Blues and the serious stuff.
Messages
Go to top
Reply
Tweet Topic
Quote

Re: England vs Croatia Match Thread

WorcsAzul replying to Frank
13:09, Thursday 12 Jul 2018
Sorry Frank I'm confused - probably not unusual you'd say!:D

I was replying to the comment that we lost to the first good team we played. I was meaning that's not true - Belgium was the first good team we played and we lost to them too so Croatia was the second good team.

Anyway small points in a context.

The team exceeded my expectations for them. Off the pitch the key man for me is Steve Holland and not the weasel-faced waist-coated DVB.
Messages
Go to top
Reply
Tweet Topic
Quote

Re: England vs Croatia Match Thread

Moneyball replying to WorcsAzul
13:25, Thursday 12 Jul 2018
I wasn't counting the Belgium game as it was something of a 'dead-rubber' considering both sides changed practically their entire team i.e. wanted to lose.
Messages
Go to top
Reply
Tweet Topic
Quote

Re: England vs Croatia Match Thread

spionkop replying to Nose of Blue
15:30, Thursday 12 Jul 2018
Linked Image
Messages
Go to top
Reply
Tweet Topic
Quote
Advertise your business to thousands of Brummies »