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Is Simeone now the Mourinho upgrade?
If United are willing to tolerate an defensive, pragmatic, aesthetically unappealing style of play, and an abrasive manager, would it not be easier to replace Mourinho with Diego Simeone?
Working with far smaller resources than Barca and Real Madrid, and regularly selling leading players, he’s won two Europa Leagues and one La Liga, and got to two CL finals, and done so developing academy players into regular starters and established Spanish internationals.
Will we regret the Liverpool absentees?
Liverpool have a whacking 7 players who, for one reason or another, miss out on the squad.
Clyne: largely injured, poor season as a result.
Solanke: not yet good enough
Sturridge: horrendous season/injury
Lallana: largely injured, poor season as a result.
All these players are capped for England, and when you add in Henderson and TAA, Liverpool have a great English core, with other up and coming British players too. Is any other team doing as much for the home nations?
KC (they all would have hoped for first team and squad place at the start of the season)
Wishing Daniel Sturridge wasn’t broken
Just to say two things after Sarah Winterburn’s nice analysis:
1) Isn’t it sad that Daniel Sturridge hasn’t been fit enough? The right kind of supporting striker to a Kane or Vardy. K+V together probably won’t gel because their instincts are the same. Sturridge has lovely close control and can link play: he could have been a kind of Sheringham, scoring too, and capable of clever space-making runs for Kane or Vardy.
2) Another reason Welbeck gets the nod – beyond experience, as Sarah notes – is that he also can play support roles in attack.
Shame is he’s not quite as good at it as Sturridge has proved himself to be in the past.
One last thought: who from that squad can actually cross the ball, really well? I might be wrong but I think Trippier can and that might be important.
This England team is likeable!
For younger readers, in 2008 and 2010 John Nicholson and Alan Tyers wrote “Not the World Cup/Euros” for this site, in which they imagined a world where England had been allowed to participate (2008)/stay in the tournament (2010) on the proviso that they replaced the Golden Generation with some far more likeable players.
Jimmy Bullard was captain of one team, Dean Windass scored in a penalty shootout while eating a corned beef and beetroot bap, and 1% said Frank Lampard.
Looking at this England squad, with its great players (e.g. Kane and Sterling), promising youngsters (Alexander-Arnold and Loftus-Cheek) and defenders who just don’t look like footballers even though they’re quite good (Jones and Maguire), this is the closest we’ve come since to a real-life version of the non-c#nts.
You can’t please everyone
How brave of Gareth Southgate to hand in his resignation this early!
Have the FA approached Wenger yet?
This team picks itself
After reading the squad is it just me or does the team literally pick itself:
Pickford, Walker, Stones, Cahill, Rose, Henderson©, Alli, Dier, Rashford, Kane and Sterling.
We have to play 4-3-3 it is the modern way, Dier provides cover for the defence and Alli should be able to get forward more to play off Kane. For me I would take Lallana. If any of that 11 gets injured (bar Kane as Vardy is good backup) then I think we are in for a short summer.
Want to be optimistic and if the above was your starting 11 in the prem you would be pretty happy but this is International football and this is England……
Please help: Not excited about the World Cup
Let me start this email by declaring that I have watched hundred of hours of football this season so the following problem is not due to falling out of love with the game.
I need the help of the mailbox because with the World Cup just days away, I just can’t get excited about it.
Reading through Gareth Southgate’s squad was about as interesting as reading through a paint wall chart of the dullest colours. Apart from the problem of not getting excited about Eng-meh-land, I’m also not that excited about the tournament itself which is unusual for me, usually I love a World Cup.
Is it Gareth Southgate? Is it Russia, the place itself? Is it the lack of regulars Italy, Holland and er… Scotland? Is it England’s recent performances in big tournaments? Is it the lack of a World Cup song? Is it Gary Cahill?
Can anyone stir my love and passion for the World Cup and show me the way? I need a loin-stirring, World Cup-loving mail to massage my juices.
Jimmy (Please help) Spain
Without City, United would have been fine
In response to Paul (MUFC) stating he is not at all excited about whichever players Jose signs over the summer as he will ruin them all he makes an interesting point about United’s start to the season . I’d forgotten that after about 8 games they had scored 4 or more about 5 times and had started the season better than anyone else (including City) and honestly had me surprised and worried.
This early season form is exactly what I remember from Jose’s Chelsea sides , they shot out of the blocks faster than Usain Bolt and basically after a third of the season were normally about 5 points clear and therefore able to play for draws against the better sides ensuring said gap never got threatened.
Now without City this year that tactic could have worked again but clearly you need a certain type of player to do it . Power rather than finesse , strength over subtlety, brawn over brains as the speed out of the blocks needs to be complemented by endurance later in the year ( Perhaps this is why Jose’s record in Europe is not as strong as his league form as the physical toll takes effect)
These tactics while effective are not inspiring but at least once again the season should end with a trophy and an uptick in the league . Jose is a winner not an entertainer simple as ,so expect more defenders to sign ( despite the most clean sheets in the league over the last two seasons)and Fellaini to stay….
DL , LFC , Geneva
Should England be welcoming foreign players?
One I’m hoping the mailbox can answer. Why does England (and rest of UK) impose the birth, parental, grand parental or 5 years compulsory education rule? Normally you just need citizenship – which is five years residency for the UK I believe. Other countries, including Portugal, Spain, Italy, Germany and Holland – have no problem with allowing ‘foreign’ players who have lived in the country long enough adopt them as a nation. Indeed, Deco, Pepe, Costa, Camoranesi and Klose are few examples of countries adopting real quality players.
In the past it has meant we’ve lost out on players like Arteta, Rangel (for Wales), Almunia and now Leon Bailey have all missed the opportunity due to this stupid rule. Can anyone in the mailbox tell me why we have this stupid rule and if there are any other players who would have/are eligible for England but we could lose to other FAs. Given the Rugby and Cricket teams are made up of foreign ringers I don’t why football should be different.