We’re all falling in love with Jesse Lingard…

Date published: Monday 25th June 2018 8:02

We are all having fun, right? Mail us at theeditor@football365.com

 

Free cake
At work we we give out free cake on a Friday. We’ve 200 hundred employees and we want them occasionally to stop what they’re doing and talk to each other and be sociable.

Very occasionally someone moans about the quality of the free cake.

I always think if you’ll moan about free cake, you’ll moan about anything.

If you get anyone who moans about winning 6-1, these people would moan about free cake.

Steer clear of these people.
Pete, DRFC in exile, Suffolk

 

Dear Jesse…
Last Monday I had a heated discussion with my boss, because he wasn’t happy with the missed chances, and my argument was that he kept getting there (intelligent movement) and his general play and movement on/off the ball is really important for the way G.Southgate’s Ingerlund play.

I said he should keep his place, he said cut him, and I think that will be a fair summary of how the whole country saw it.

So Jesse, just want to say fair play. You’ve become a very tidy little footballer, and most of your goals make me go all fizzy around the undercarriage. Us United fans have been waiting for you to return to reality this entire season, and yet you have kept on going from strength to strength.

Keep it up lad.
Mark Danger Endicott, MUFC

 

…I feel a little bit dirty writing this.

After my favourite football writer Liam Mackey gave an ironic theory for still loving England fail, I kind of fell in love with this England team.

Mainly Lingard. The guy you kind of love to hate. He is, after all, what we would call ‘The Kiddie’.

He is a bit of a legend. Yeah the Fortnite and the celebrations make him seem like a bit of a dick, but how I would love to have him in an Ireland shirt. He is the kiddie. A baller, a guy you can’t like, but will ultimately warm to.

One of my friends asked me what I wanted from England. I hope for glorious failure, because we couldn’t have you winning it. But I would love a thrilling English performance beaten by a better team. On viewing there may not be many of them. I can’t stand you winning but with the squad you have I do love you winning. Fair balls.

Sean McLoughlin will usurp Lovren within four weeks. You are welcome scousers. He is the best we’ve ever had as Arctic Monkeys will sing.

God bless. I love F365
Michael Hayes

 

…Remember when all the writers at football365 agreed amongst themselves that Jesse Lingard wasn’t good enough? Even after an FA Cup final winner.

That Wilshere lad though, future of English football…
Rob, Guangzhou

 

Getting biblical
The Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse are described in the last book of the New Testament of the Bible.

The chapter tells of a book or scroll in God’s right hand that is sealed with seven seals. The Lamb of God opens the first four of the seven seals, which summons four beings that ride out on white, red, black, and pale horses.

Surely if it comes to fruition, Ashley Young being a World Cup Winning left back would be one of those four horseman.

Do we dare to dream?
Luca James

 

Happy happy happy
I realise Panama are shite, but we usually struggle against weak teams.

Let’s just enjoy this while we can.
Rob (in a bar in Spain full of disbelieving Germans and Spaniards).

 

…What a great game that was. I’m not one for getting carried away with England but this England team has got me smiling again and maybe, just maybe, we can go quite far.

This World Cup so far has been fantastic, lots of goals, some wonderful football and who doesn’t love a good upset. But…. the play acting, the gamesmanship, the feigning injury, time wasting and the downright cheating has been unbelievably frustrating. I was under the impression that with the introduction of VAR this would see if not an end to it a big decline in cheating, I couldn’t have been more wrong, it seems to me it’s risen to unprecedented levels. I suppose it’s the smaller countries who are using these tactics more than others to gain an advantage so I’m hoping as the competition goes on well see a lot less.

Here’s to a great World Cup and an England team I can get behind.
Mick T, Liverpool

 

…I don’t care if it’s ‘only Tunisia/Panama’, I’m feeling proud of this team. In fact, I’ll go out on a limb and say I’ve never been prouder.
Chris Hardy (not sure I’ve ever seen three fouls from the same corner before though??)

 

…Well I’ll be damned. 16 Conclusions had it spot on – I don’t care if it’s Panama, I don’t care if we still have Belgium to come and potentially bring us back down to Earth. England won a World Cup game with conviction and some sublime football too.

Today was a day to celebrate. I’ve grown up on Ronaldinho lobbing Seaman, Ricardo becoming Dr Octopus and Bloemfontein. F*cking Blomfontein.

We played without fear. We smashed ‘em. All whilst I was sitting on the sofa, drinking a beer, actually relaxed (I can’t believe it either) whilst my girlfriend was saying things like, “Does that guy with the black hair still manage Germany? The one who looks like an old porn star?”

I refuse to get carried away because disappointment might be just around the corner. But cruising the straight feels bloody good right now.
Jack, 24, London (yes Lynsey, he does)


Do we really want to play Colombia?

I expect the vast majority of the mails you get will be in response to England’s hammering of Panama but I wanted to make a point about Colombia after their impressive dismantling of Poland. Their has been a lot of talk since Mexico beat Germany that it would be more beneficial to come second in Group G, as Germany/Brazil would likely be avoided until the final, so much so that Roberto Martinez has apparently said he will be making changes for the clash with England next week. That is a very dangerous tactic to employ for a couple of reasons. Obviously there’s the psychological impact of a negative result, but also the way it has been construed is that Belgium and England will breeze past whoever qualifies from Group H.

Colombia’s preparations went out the window five minutes into that game with Japan after Sanchez was sent off but they were mightily impressive against Poland. A front four of Falcao, Cuadrado, Quintero and Rodriguez are more than a match for anyone and were stunning against a helpless Poland. The desire evident from all the Colombian players is apparent, roared on by an incredible amount of supporters.

They work so hard, with Rodriguez sprinting to close down a Polish player in his own half deep into injury time. Cuadrado was as outstanding tonight as he was dismal against Japan, while the world class ability of James Rodriguez is evidenced by 2 wonderful assists.

If England play Colombia in the next round, I’ll be backing Colombia after that performance. Davison Sanchez plays at club level with Kane so they both know each other well, so it would be interesting to see who comes out on top there, while England’s defence haven’t convinced against Tunisia or Panama. Falcao’s movement and aerial ability will certainly provide a real test against an inexperienced central defensive trio, assuming they don’t get it facing Lukaku. With the Group H on first on Thursday, England and Belgium will know what they have to do to face, or avoid Colombia.
Dan, Dublin (Spain to win it all!)

 

Let’s talk Japan
Another game, another costly Eiji Kawashiima error. Football is much harder when you have to play against 11 men for 90 minutes instead of three. Japan can be pleased with a point though. Pessimists would lament the missed chances by Yuya Osako, who somehow missed the ball entirely when Gaku Shibasaki crossed it, and Takashi Inui, who hit the bar. Optimists would be happy that Japan twice came from behind to level the match, and Inui’s goal in particular was nicely taken (he scored a similar curler in the last warm up against Paraguay).

That first goal though. What on earth Kawashima was thinking, I doubt even he knows. The best anyone in the NHK studio could come up with by way of explanation was former Japan midfielder Ruy Ramos and his tightly permed mullet’s conjecture that Kawashima wanted to deal with it decisively. I’ve never played international football, but I would counter that by suggesting that punching a low, catchable ball onto the knee of the striker right in front of you is not the best way to deal with the situation.

Nevertheless, there were some impressive performances from the Japanese, in my opinion particularly from the central midfield partnership of Makoto Hasebe and Shibasaki. Shibasaki created several decent chances, while Hasebe dropped deep to act as an extra centre back and then pushed forward to spread the ball out wide. He also spilled blood for the cause when he took an elbow to the nose – some people like their captains to do that whole martyrdom thing. Gen Shoji also took an elbow in the face, which won’t have helped him get over his shakiness on the ball: several times he tried to dribble upfield and lost the ball.

So, with one game to play against the team who are already eliminated, Japan’s fate is in their own hands. We might see Akira Nishino make one or two changes but they’ll probably be in midfield and up front rather than in goal. The fact that it’s not Japan who are already packing their bags is frankly a minor miracle, but they can’t afford any more silly mistakes or they really will be going home.
James T, Ishikawa, Japan

 

Worst World Cup ever? Not at all
I hadn’t even realised that anyone thought that, unless I’ve just fallen for the old straw man trick.

Personally this has seemed a brilliant World Cup – Ronaldo hat trick, Germany losing, Argentina practically out, Brazil not safe, England scoring goals and other unexpected results from unfancied countries. The fans have been mental too and the stadia all seem full of actual fans in colours, no hospitality tickets to be seen.

Looking back and now that I think of it, there have actually been some really dull games – the thing is, they all seem to have happened during working hours so perhaps I haven’t been affected as negatively by them. They all look alright on the highlights, I suppose. It seems like all of the evening and weekend games have been unmissable!

Loving this World Cup and dreading the downturn that may follow making such a bold statement….
Dan Wardle (MUFC since 1983)

 

Peter G’s team of the round
To follow on from Daniel Storey’s piece, I’d say it’s most certainly been a good tournament so far. Although goals from open play are down, the overall quality of the goals is the best in a very long time. Most of the games have been lively, with plenty of surprise results. Most remarkably, no less than seven matches, 21.8% of the total, have been decided in the 88th minute or later.

For me the biggest negative is the pervasive tactical fouling. The refs have obviously been instructed only to show a card when absolutely necessary, and so teams have been getting away with lots of fouls they wouldn’t otherwise.

Anyway, here’s a first and second XI for the second round of games only, as a 4-1-4-1:

GK: David Ospina (Keylor Navas)

RB: Luis Advincula (Benjamin Pavard)

CB: Simon Kjær (Maya Yoshida)

CB: Kenneth Omeruo (Hector Moreno)

LB: Marcelo (Achraf Hakimi)

DM: N’Golo Kanté (Roman Zobnin)

AM: Juan Fernando Quintero (Jesse Lingard)

AM: Luka Modric (Eden Hazard)

W: Denis Cheryshev (Nordin Amarabat)

W: Xherdan Shaqiri (Juan Cuadrado)

FW: Romelu Lukaku (Ahmed Musa)
Peter G, Pennsylvania, USA (can Harry Kane take every penalty in the shootouts?)

 

Love for our Never-Ending Storey
Do you know the way kids these days are obsessed with watching other kids with serious skills play video games, I’d love to watch Daniel Storey watch an England WC game, can we maybe Cam up for the Belgium game in F365 studios??
Stevo, Dublin

 

…someone needs to give Storey a pay rise after all this.

His back must be in agony after all the carrying.
Paul

 

…The coverage and analysis on 365 since the start of the World Cup has been second to none. Seriously, this is football writing of the highest order. Are there actually three Daniel Storeys?!

Bloody good work. Keep it up.
Richard, Manchester

 

An unexpected apology
For over a decade I’ve been a F365-aholic. I’ve even gotten into trouble at work for it, such was my habit of visiting your site so frequently.

Frankly, I’ve been a pr*ck towards you for a few years. For sure, there are aspects of your writing that I’ve felt a growing frustration with, and I’ve vented that in a troll-ish fashion that isn’t actually representative of who I am.

It’s probably best that I don’t do comments anymore – as another regular (Jeremy) said to me: It’s likely that I keep coming just to vent when I see the little ticks in your writing.

It sounds pathetic (it probably is) to say that F365 has been a key part of my life for a long time. I’m not making excuses but that’s likely why I’ve gotten so abusive – like I was losing touch with something I felt so in tune with. I guess I’ve found my 35 year old self is something of a “centrist dad” and that media is so polarised that it don’t fit.

Anyway, I still visit your site daily and I still think you’re all brilliant. I agree with practically everything you say, if not how you say it. I’ve been a horrible person and I’m not sure how that happened, but I don’t want to be that anymore.

Keep up the good work. It is good work, no matter what my aggressive online persona has said.
Stu x

 


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