Stars and Gripes

Occasionally interesting insight (and gripes) about the USMNT

Some Thoughts on England

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They looked dreadful, just absolutely dreadful, against Algeria this afternoon. That is as poorly as they’ve played under Fabio Capello, and by some measure. I don’t reckon I’ll have time to write about this again, but if I were Capello, I would:

– Insert Michael Dawson for Carragher (he has no choice, with Carragher on two yellows)

– Move Gerrard up as a withdrawn striker with freedom to roam, playing in the space behind Rooney, where he can go sideline to sideline. Neither Crouch nor Defoe offer good foil for Rooney, and Emile Heskey spent 70 minutes making Robbie Findley look like Garrincha. Why not try? It would also help if Gerrard actually put a ball in the vicinity of a teammate.

– Put Joe Cole on the left wing. No one even seemed to want the ball for England today–at least Cole will provide a direct attacking threat. Furthermore, he and Gerrard can rotate competently from wing to center. Apparently Capello “doesn’t fancy” Cole. Well, England “doesn’t fancy” a listless 90 minutes of football–suck it up, Fabio.

– Keep Lennon on the right–on a very, very short leash. What’s Capello going to do, give Wright-Phillips a 90-minute run out? Didn’t think so. All of a sudden, an “out of form” Theo Walcott looks like a nice option, doesn’t he?

– Make sure to print good directions to the stadium for Frank Lampard–he obviously didn’t receive them today. With Gerrard roaming from the slot role, Lampard should push even further up than he normally does, playing the attacking role that he has excelled in for Chelsea (and, at times, England).

On the bright side, England really can’t play any worse than they did today…at least, I don’t think so.

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Written by Pete Kavanaugh

June 18, 2010 at 5:30 pm

Posted in Uncategorized

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