Settling back to below normal

I think I spoke too soon.

Since the bright start things have settled down. After the Australia v Ghana game (a suprisingly entertaining affair) we have fallen to 21 goals in 9 games, back to 2.33 goals per game. At least that is in line with other tournaments.

England were woeful. So disappointing to watch that performance. What is worrying is the lack of any innovation. Rooney was poor up front, and pointless as a left winger. Surely a switch to 4-3-3 isn’t that scary?

However to keep it in perspective: we beat Slovenia we are through. Slovenia may be top of the group but they are a European opponent and that may suit our style of play. After all we did alright against Europeans in qualifying. Of course we had a fit Walcott then.

Wright-Philips was the closest to a high spot in the team, and you can’t be rude about Joe Cole because we haven’t seen him play, but I am starting to wonder if Theo should have been picked. This is entirely benefit of hindsight, I agreed with the selection at the time, but we need something different. Maybe Capello needs to play Cole, but I agree with whichever pundit said that if Cole is the answer you’re asking the wrong question.

The big issue is at centre back. Carragher is banned. King is crocked. Ferdinand is Emiled. I’d guess it’ll be Terry and Upson, but we are well down the pecking order. Dawson (who is probably next when Terry gets sent off or whatever), it should be noted, has the princely total of 0 caps.

Anyway I remain cautiously optimistic about reaching the knock out stages.

Looking at the other groups that have played 2 games:

Group A: France are relying on Mexico wanting to win the group. That isn’t impossible: would you want to face Argentina, or would you prefer South Korea, Greece or Nigeria? France could still get there, but I suspect South Africa might want a result more than the current French team. Somehow I suspect Uruguay and Mexico will play out a 0-0 draw and get through.

Group B: Argentina are solid. I suspect that means Greece are going to get thrashed. Nigeria have been disappointing, so I suspect South Korea might sneak through the middle. Argentina and S Korea.

Group D: I suspect Germany will beat Ghana, which would mean the winner of Serbia v Australia would be in with a shout. However (assuming wikipedia is right about the tie break method) Australia would have a huge goal difference to overcome, and I think Serbia are better anyway. Germany and Serbia I think.

Anyway the next game in my football marathon is in a couple of hours. Cameroon v Denmark.

Then again I could do something else instead…

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