Morning folks. First of all, apologies for the weekend of no blogs. Having returned from South Africa last week, I quickly got onto another flight to Malaga to attend my cousins wedding in Marbella. What a wedding it was. It was unbelievable.
At the same time, the end of the group stage of the world cup took place and the first games of the round of 16 started – the highlight being of course, England vs Germany yesterday which saw the England team crumble to a humbling 4-1 defeat to a German side which was brimming with confidence and desire and more importantly self belief. You’ve probably read more words on that game that anything else today – I won’t go over spilt milk.
A few points to make, to explain our demise:
- Inability to choose a first choice goalkeeper
- Chosing Rob Green and then David James, when Joe Hart is clearly our best keeper
- Choosing Jamie Carragher – who admitted he had his worst season
- Not taking Sol Campbell when he has been much better than the likes of Carragher, Upson and Dawson
- Taking the gamble on Ledley King with Carragher as back up
- Insistence on a) taking Heskey b) Playing Heskey
- Failure to pick Walcott and instead take the ineffective duo of Lennon and SWP
- Having no option B, plan B, apart from replacing like for like
- Inability to flex or change the formation to get the best out of players
- Playing Steven Gerrard on the left, where he is uncomfortable and obviously drifts in, unbalancing the squad
- The lack of playing time for Joe Cole, who was our best player in the pre World Cup friendlies
- Ignoring top talents in the premiership like Gary Cahill (much better than Upson), Theo Walcott, Adam Johnson, Ashley Young, Gabriel Agbonlahor, Darren Bent, and especially Scott Parker.
I’ve bulletted those points above, as I didn’t feel to explain the further, they are self explanatory, plus I don’t want to dwell too much on England as it’s truly annoying to see a nation of people believe in a team and spend £1000′s to support them to be rewarded with such nonsense as above. The mentality of the players wasn’t right either and I don’t think John Terry or Wayne Rooney have made any friends this World Cup.
Moving away from England, the World Cup is starting to hot up and there are some excellent clashes coming up – especially later tonight as Spain take on Portugal. Our very Cesc has shown in his cameo appearances that he deserves a starting place and Portugal have shown that they’ve got a swagger about them. Holland will take on Brazil in the quarter finals, and Germany will take on Argentina – both will be outstanding football feasts. Even though England are out, there is still a lot of football to be played.
One thing we’ll see since England’s exit signals the real start of the transfer window… with players like Yaya Toure, Maicon and Di Maria on the verge of their various moves. We’ve already signed Chamakh and we look like our next signing is going to be Laurent Koscielny for around £8m. News from in and around the club is that the signing will be announced on Thursday and I won’t comment on the quality of the signing as I simply don’t know enough about the player. If the player is like the Sagna signing – a player who fits in well and was relatively unknown before, then I’ll be happy. One question is whether or not we can go into the new season with the quartet of defenders of Vermaelen, Koscielny, Djourou and youngster Nordtvelt.
If we do go for another defender, then I presume they know they won’t be first choice, it’s a tough one. If we did bring in Mexes, then does that mean Koscielny is coming in as 3rd defender and Djourou as 4th – would the resigning of Campbell without the likelihood of first team football be good for either club or player.
I think the next 7 days will see a few more moves happening, he confirmation of Koscielny and perhaps another player is on the horizon too – who do you think we need next – another winger, a defensive midfielder or a goalkeeper?
Til tomorrow… time for me to get some rest and get some work done!