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*Official* Round of 16 thread

Lillian Thomson

Hall of Fame Member
England exceeded my expectations at this tournament. I said in the other thread when the squad was announced that it's the worst England squad ever with barely an international quality footballer amongst them. The fact that they won a game was more than I was expecting.
 

GIMH

Norwood's on Fire
England genuinely looked surprised every time an Iceland player passed the ball. The "underestimated them" stuff is a cliché but that's really what happened, they defended the whole game as if Iceland were a team of blockheads that looks long every time when they actually use the ball reasonably well.
I don't want to sound like a broken record but I'm going to anyway. Anyone who's been a big club in non league would understand. It reminded me of seven of the nine Tranmere home defeats last season. You go away knowing we've had more of the ball and that on paper we should win but that the other team did their homework better and thoroughly deserved the points.

I say seven because there was one game against Eastleigh where we genuinely battered them but finished with nine men due to red card + injury after three subs and couldn't get the equaliser, and Cheltenham who won the league with 100+ points.

But yeah my point is basically it was a template for how to beat a side that in theory you shouldn't but in practice you can and easily.
 

Uppercut

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I don't want to sound like a broken record but I'm going to anyway. Anyone who's been a big club in non league would understand. It reminded me of seven of the nine Tranmere home defeats last season. You go away knowing we've had more of the ball and that on paper we should win but that the other team did their homework better and thoroughly deserved the points.

I say seven because there was one game against Eastleigh where we genuinely battered them but finished with nine men due to red card + injury after three subs and couldn't get the equaliser, and Cheltenham who won the league with 100+ points.

But yeah my point is basically it was a template for how to beat a side that in theory you shouldn't but in practice you can and easily.
Yeah I completely agree. There's this huge gulf right now, and it's especially obvious at international level, between teams that have a plan and teams that don't. Iceland have a pressing plan, so every player knows what opposing player they're meant to pick up when they press, how high they're going to press, and in what circumstances they're going to give up and drop back. They have transition plans, so everyone knows exactly how to respond when the team wins or loses the ball. They have pre-arranged set pieces, which got them a goal out of nothing tonight. You see a team doing these things and you know, even if they're losing, the coach is doing his job well.

Conversely, you watch England, and you see none of these things, and you know Hodgson is a clown. But tbf we knew that already.
 

dontcloseyoureyes

BARNES OUT
The pundit team on beIN Sports over here last night so arrogantly dismissed the Iceland team that this is so hilariously satisfying. Wish I hadn't fallen asleep so I could see the reactions of Gray, MacAteer and especially Souness after the way they "previewed" this one.
 

social

Hall of Fame Member
Yeah I completely agree. There's this huge gulf right now, and it's especially obvious at international level, between teams that have a plan and teams that don't. Iceland have a pressing plan, so every player knows what opposing player they're meant to pick up when they press, how high they're going to press, and in what circumstances they're going to give up and drop back. They have transition plans, so everyone knows exactly how to respond when the team wins or loses the ball. They have pre-arranged set pieces, which got them a goal out of nothing tonight. You see a team doing these things and you know, even if they're losing, the coach is doing his job well.

Conversely, you watch England, and you see none of these things, and you know Hodgson is a clown. But tbf we knew that already.
If the All Blacks completely lost their marbles and appointed me as coach, I can almost guarantee that the players would still find a way to beat the rugby equivalent of Iceland 99/100 times.

Hodgson might not be any good but the players are nothing to write home about either
 

GIMH

Norwood's on Fire
The pundit team on beIN Sports over here last night so arrogantly dismissed the Iceland team that this is so hilariously satisfying. Wish I hadn't fallen asleep so I could see the reactions of Gray, MacAteer and especially Souness after the way they "previewed" this one.
*McAteer is a ****
 

Uppercut

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If the All Blacks completely lost their marbles and appointed me as coach, I can almost guarantee that the players would still find a way to beat the rugby equivalent of Iceland 99/100 times.
What you've just described is the difference between football and rugby, and what makes football far better.

Obviously England's players have a lot to answer for after tonight, but I don't think the squad fundamentally lacks quality in the way they did four years ago.
 

GIMH

Norwood's on Fire
What you've just described is the difference between football and rugby, and what makes football far better.

Obviously England's players have a lot to answer for after tonight, but I don't think the squad fundamentally lacks quality in the way they did four years ago.
No this is true but I think Furball nailed it. We got through a tougher group than this time four years ago with seven points because Gerrard was excellent. We have players of that quality but nobody who could drag you through a game.
 

Bahnz

Hall of Fame Member
What you've just described is the difference between football and rugby, and what makes football far better.
I actually think that the ability of teams to play negatively and be vastly outclassed but still beat their opponents by capitalising on one or two opposition mistakes is one of football's biggest drawbacks as a sport. But to each their own I gues.
 

Uppercut

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No this is true but I think Furball nailed it. We got through a tougher group than this time four years ago with seven points because Gerrard was excellent. We have players of that quality but nobody who could drag you through a game.
Yeah this is true. It's one solution to a dysfunctional team, to just have one inspired player who tries to do everything and succeeds more often than he has any right to. But it's not my favourite solution.

Also I'm not sure there are many players like that about anymore anywhere? Seem to have died out a bit.
 

Cabinet96

Global Moderator
Yeah, don't think Germany, Spain or Italy have a player like that. Maybe Ronaldo, Pogba or De Bruyne/Hazard in inspired mood could do it but I can't think of that many more in the best teams.
 

Redbacks

International Captain
If the All Blacks completely lost their marbles and appointed me as coach, I can almost guarantee that the players would still find a way to beat the rugby equivalent of Iceland 99/100 times.
England is not even on the same level of ability in football as the All Blacks are to Rugby though. They are a consistent top 20 side, not number 1.
 

Tangles

International Vice-Captain
Don't excuse the players for that performance. Don't think one of them out worked or put in the same effort as their opposing player. They didn't even give the proper level of drama expected of England. Namely a last minute equalizer and then a loss on penalties.
 

social

Hall of Fame Member
What you've just described is the difference between football and rugby, and what makes football far better.

Obviously England's players have a lot to answer for after tonight, but I don't think the squad fundamentally lacks quality in the way they did four years ago.
I just think it's too easy to heap all of the blame on Hodgson when there is literally nothing to stop the players from changing things up on the park when things are going awry e.g. from what I've seen/read, Kane's dead ball stuff was pretty atrocious in a couple of matches so why not give it to somebody else?

That doesnt require leadership, just common sense
 

DriveClub

International Regular
I actually think that the ability of teams to play negatively and be vastly outclassed but still beat their opponents by capitalising on one or two opposition mistakes is one of football's biggest drawbacks as a sport. But to each their own I gues.
True I find thats the case a lot of the time as well
 

Ikki

Hall of Fame Member
That England went this long with Hodgson was madness. Utter madness. He failed from beginning to end to show anything in these tournaments. He never showed anything at club level to suggest he is a manager capable at the highest level. England with their choices of manager have ruined almost 2 decades worth of talent. Even this bunch are capable of much more than this crap.
 

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