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Fifa World Cup : Why England Lost
6/29/10 - Why England Failed This World Cup A post-tournament enquiry begun, the FA has 2 weeks to decide on Fabio Capello’s future, and millions of English football fans are in furore over the heavy 4-1 defeat by Germany on Sunday.
So what exactly went wrong for the England football team, and who is to blame for their defeat? Below I’ll list them all here. Please note you can bet on any of the furute 2010 world cup matches, or get all stats, odds and scores, just visit Bodog Sportsbook.
Using Out-of Form Players
The highest paid manager in the world he may be (£6 million per year contract), but the ex-Milan and Madrid manager left many strewing in his rigid and inflexible tactical decisions. His failure to use in-form players and exciting talents such as Adam Johnson, Joe Hart and Darren Bent for the World Cup leaves a lot to be explained. Gareth Barry, who he insisted on using in a rigid 4-4-2 formation looked unfit for the entire tournament, having been rushed straight into the starting line-up from injury.
Shaun Wright Philips, who featured in the few games England actually lasted has been edged out of the first-time by fellow Englishmen Adam Johnson at club level by Man City since February – and has spent most of his time on the bench. Finally, the lumbering prodigy that is Emile Heskey has failed to ascertain any first-team action at club level in the last 6 months, and was never destined to provide England with the goals they needed having one of the worst international striker records in the world: 7 goals in 62 games for England since 1999.
Playing Too Many Players Out of Position
4-4-2 is becoming outdated in international football. You’ll find most successful teams are adopting a more dynamic 4-2-3-1 formation such as Spain, Brazil and Germany.
Because of Capello’s insistence on 4-4-2 however, too many key individuals were being played out of position. Gerrard, a central midfielder by name, was forced (against his desire) to play on the wings throughout the entire tournament and practically starved the side of width, pace and creativity. Milner has been crucial for Aston Villat the entire 09/10 season in central midfield, but not on the right-wing dancing down the touchlines or taking on defenders as Capello sees him. Again, Rooney has been most prolific for Utd as a stand-alone striker and target man, not a deep sitting midfielder covering behind a front man like Defoe.
Rigidity in Capello’s Regime
Capello’s rigidity in tactics has been obvious all season. Pundits and fans were crying out for Gerrard to be used further up the field to partner Rooney. A position more lethal for them both and one that Gerrard is more accustomed to with Torres at Liverpool. Yet Capello ignored them.
Second, Capello’s rigid 4-4-2 system has left England exposed and predictable at the world cup tournament, with teams as bad as Algeria and USA aptly able to defend against them. At times England needed something different to break down teams, hence their pithy ability to score just 3 goals in 4 games (compare this to Brazil’s 8 by the same stage).
Capello failed to take notice of this, preferring instead to stick to the same abstemious team which was successful in the qualifiers one year ago.
Lack of Technically Gifted Players in the England Crop
An argument that has been reviewed time and time again – the lack of technical grasp in English players emerging from english youth academies. It arguably removeds a dimension of football that is so crucial when it comes to the international stage. Hence England’s inability to win a single world cup, or even come close to one, in over 50 years.
In conclusion, Capello has pointed to the fitness of key players after crashing out so ignonimously. Fans have not witnessed a single game where England have lived up to expectations or anything like the “golden generation” advocated by the FA commercial department. Rooney has looked woeful and far below club-form (except for the Slovenia game), Barry has looked overweight and exanimate, and even Gerrard has looked wanting at times.
However, when Capello became England manager he brought a strict rhetoric of discipline that included picking players by form. If players were unfit before the tournament, perhaps the FA should ask Capello why he decided to take them all to South Africa, ahead of their decision to “back or sack” him for the Euro 2012 campaign.
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The Shape of Water leads Sunday’s 90th Academy Awards (8 PM ET, ABC) with 13 Oscar nominations, but when it comes to Best Picture, this highly-acclaimed film is a +140 second-favorite behind Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri at –115.
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