Saturday, 19 June 2010

World Cup Nightmares

Now that the anger has had time to simmer I thought I'd write about how the World Cup's been getting along, or not in England's case.

I'm a perpetual optimist, in most things but in football as well. I'd always believed we had a shot at winning the World Cup, obviously I didn't think we were the favourites but in knock-out football anything can happen. We have players that can turn a game on its head in an instant, when they can be bothered that is. Spain's defeat to Switzerland and Brazil's struggle against North Korea just showed how little form and dominance can be reduced to in cup football. With that in mind I looked forward to England following up the USA game (which I thought they played okay in, without any real brilliance and just got very unlucky) with a fired up display against a poor Algeria side. What we got was utter crap.

I've never seen England play that badly under Capello, it was just such a nothing game. Algeria offered nothing, England offered less. Most worrying of all maybe was the horrendous performance of Wayne Rooney. He wasn't just sidelined and not able to get in the game, he actively gave the ball away countless times and his touch and passing were terrible. I don't think he's ever played that badly for club or country in the past. And he was by no means the only poor performance, in fact its hard to pick out any positives. Something needs to change, and quick, or we could be out in the group stages if we play like that again against Slovenia.

I'm no casual football fan, and so I usually hate the kind of fickle fans who boo their own team at the end of the game, but on this occasion I can sympathise. The players just looked so condemned to not winning from far too early. And for Rooney to sarcastically say 'Nice to see your own fans booing you, that's what loyal support is.' after the game was disgusting. These people have paid thousands of pounds and taken a lot of time out of work and normal life to come watch you play football, only to be treated to a performance with no desire, they have every right to voice their upset. I hope it was just a heat of the moment comment and he promptly apologises unreservedly.

Buck your ideas up England, this tournament is still saveable, but only just.

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