New Regime? No, Same Old England

Oh dear, another England friendly, another warm reception from the dwindling Wembley crowd. Yes, even that glorious national stadium is losing its shine as it see’s one dour England performance after another.

This time we welcomed the Czech Republic as we waited to see what lessons had been learned whilst sitting it out of Euro 2008. And the answer unsurprisingly appears to be – none.

You see, while Fabio Capello gave John Terry the captaincy, that’s not the only thing he did that was in keeping with his predecessor. Of course, he made it sound good, warning Terry and therefore indirectly, all of his players, that any drop in form would result in their swift exit from the side. However, his actions don’t appear to have reflected his words. Because, again like his predecessor, Capello has opted to save the admin staff unnecessary time and effort typing up a team sheet – by using the one that’s been saved in the file marked ‘old habits’.

If you’re a creature of habit and very easily pleased then this was the game for you because we were treated to pretty much the same personnel, delivering the same inadequate performance as we’ve become all too used to from this bunch of overpaid failures with as much commitment as an old soak in a boozer.

Just like those before him, he was determined to squeeze Lampard and Gerrard into the same team even if took a crowbar to do it. And why wouldn’t he when it’s proved it’s fruitlessness fruitfulness time and again? He’d also decided to sacrifice one of the country’s best midfielders (our very own Joe Cole) in the process, so he was on a hiding to nothing from the start as far as I was concerned at least.

Anyway, what were we treated to on the pitch this time? More of the same really. Slapstick defending and even funnier goalkeeping, a couple of goals conceded (one a beauty of a free-kick that was actually worth watching), a collector’s item from Wes Brown and a ‘get of jail’ goal in the dying minutes from that player who shouldn’t have started on the bench!

So, in a nutshell, as good as these men may be for their clubs, it doesn’t work and hasn’t done for years. Compare us to what we had to sit and watch during Euro 2008 and we’ll be lucky to qualify, never mind actually win anything. But if the supposed ‘dogs danglies’ of a manager can’t sort England out, who can? Maybe a manager who lives up to the hype of truly having the balls to change this habit of plucking the ‘top’ players out of the top league and assuming it’ll work.

This isn’t the Premier League, this is England!  

England team to play Czech Republic: same as ever 






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