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England - The Road to 2012 (now featuring Wayne Rooney) but not his touch

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Crouchys link up play is pretty good to be fair.

He's certainly got a good touch for a big man. You can see for Man Utd how good Welbecks link up play is though, for me he's the reason I'd take Gerrard to the Euro's as (as long as he's fit) they'd dovetail really well while Rooney is out. We wont get anywhere lumping the ball up to Crouch in the air, while Rooney is out we'll need a striker who can take the ball with his back to goal, hold it up and lay it off for the midfield runners, there hasn't been anyone (English) better than Welbeck at that this season.

I don't think he's better than any with linking up, tbh. Welbeck, that is.

Yeah I figured you thought that, it doesn't mean you're not wrong though :D

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I agree Welbeck should be our main striker while Rooney is out. Crouch just isn't successful enough. I can't remember a single time when lumping it up to him has worked in a big game against meaningful opposition.

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I'd play Welbeck with Rooney when Rooney is available, but I wouldn't without him. Because we don't have a Rooney replacement we'd need a different shape and style and I don't think Welbeck is good enough or "the right fit" to play in it.

I'd play Crouch and Defoe, they've both had solid seasons, have good experience, good goal return, good partnership history and are both fit. And would fit in well with the fact that our biggest asset is attacking fullbacks and choice of wingers rather than a dynamic centre of the park.

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Granted we have poor options for forwards for the first two games but I really struggle with the notion that anyone could want Crouch and Defoe as our two strikers in an international tournament. They have been average at best this season.

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Bent should still go, as long as he can play in the two friendlies before the tournament starts.

I'd take Rooney, Bent, Crouch and Welbeck as my four, and would play them in that order. Carroll hasn't done nearly enough yet despite his recent upturn in form.

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Would think this is England best lineup for the first game:

Hart

Richards Lescott Ferdinand Cole

Carrick CM Barry

Walcott Welbeck Young

Would pick someone else over Welbeck but think the linkup play possible between him and the other two upfront might negate the need for a big man up top. Someone like Cleverley or Wilshere would be ideal for the 3rd CM role, would burst forward and link up with the front 3. The former doesn't deserve to go based on limited games and the other injured. Would guess Lampard or Gerrard in there.

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Would think this is England best lineup for the first game:

Hart

Richards Lescott Ferdinand Cole

Carrick CM Barry

Walcott Welbeck Young

Would pick someone else over Welbeck but think the linkup play possible between him and the other two upfront might negate the need for a big man up top. Someone like Cleverley or Wilshere would be ideal for the 3rd CM role, would burst forward and link up with the front 3. The former doesn't deserve to go based on limited games and the other injured. Would guess Lampard or Gerrard in there.

Our best lineup doesnt seem to involve England's best defender

Hopefully we line up like this for the first game

Hart

Richards/Walker Terry Lescott/Cahill Cole

Parker Carrick

Walcott Gerrard Young

Welbeck

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This is how the team should line-up without Rooney:

---------------Hart---------------

Richards---Jags---Lescott---Baines

--------------Parker--------------

---------Carrick---Milner----------

Walcott---------------------Young

-------------Welbeck-------------

Replace Walcott with Sturridge or whatever. Not sure I want Milner in there but some more energy is needed.

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Our best lineup doesnt seem to involve England's best defender

Hopefully we line up like this for the first game

Hart

Richards/Walker Terry Lescott/Cahill Cole

Parker Carrick

Walcott Gerrard Young

Welbeck

gerrard :D

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This is how the team should line-up without Rooney:

---------------Hart---------------

Richards---Jags---Lescott---Baines

--------------Parker--------------

---------Carrick---Milner----------

Walcott---------------------Young

-------------Welbeck-------------

Replace Walcott with Sturridge or whatever. Not sure I want Milner in there but some more energy is needed.

Really surprised you didn't manage to shoehorn Rodwell and Neville into that starting lineup.

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select_screen_name has been very deluded on this page! Welbeck is going to be fantastic when he is older, is still very raw but so much potential, pace, power, great work ethic and good technique. Some of his link up play with Rooney has been excellent...only major criticism is he is very wasteful in front of goal, but no reason why he can't become more efficient.

Yes Crouch has good link up play but his movement is just absolutely awful, I'd take Welbeck over him any day.

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Some of his link up play with Rooney has been excellent

I do wonder how much of that is down to Rooney though. And if Welbeck is up front on his own, who is his link-up play going to be with? Grandpa Gerrard/Lampard?

I think at this stage of his career he needs to be with another forward and not on his own.

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Really surprised you didn't manage to shoehorn Rodwell and Neville into that starting lineup.

Rodwell's injured, otherwise he should be starting ahead of Parker. Neville too busy being assistant manager ofc.

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Has Scholes ever remotely said he would consider making a comeback?

Yes, he said it after he turned Capello down. Give him time, tell him he'd be first choice if he was fit, you'd have a chance.

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I agree Welbeck should be our main striker while Rooney is out. Crouch just isn't successful enough. I can't remember a single time when lumping it up to him has worked in a big game against meaningful opposition.

Croatia? Ok, we lost, but Crouch did well.

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Our best lineup doesnt seem to involve England's best defender

Hopefully we line up like this for the first game

Hart

Richards/Walker Terry Lescott/Cahill Cole

Parker Carrick

Walcott Gerrard Young

Welbeck

Since when is Terry England's best defender? Cole easily.

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Carlsberg done another England advert for the Euros. Pretty funny. Prefer this one to other one. Little more tongue in cheek

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The 'Crouch doesn't score against good teams' argument is pretty hopeless really. In those games where we play weak teams there are other players on the pitch and they don't score wheras Crouch does, what does that say about them? Crouch would be remembered a lot more fondly if Croatia had not eliminated us. Teams like Trinidad it was 0-0, ffs so there's a 'weak' team that no one could score against until very very late when Crouch scored.

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I do wonder how much of that is down to Rooney though. And if Welbeck is up front on his own, who is his link-up play going to be with? Grandpa Gerrard/Lampard?

I think at this stage of his career he needs to be with another forward and not on his own.

With the way the Hodge roles he'll probably find himself up top with another player anyway, Woy likes a '2'

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Assuming Roy plays a 4-3-3/4-5-1 I'd go with

Hart/Green/Ruddy (/backup, just so you know)

Richards/Johnson Lescott/Cahill Terry/Jagielka Cole/Baines

Gerrard/Scholes Parker/Milner Carrick/Lampard

Sturridge/Walcott Rooney/Crouch Young/Welbeck

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Seems weird that after moaning about too many older players at the last World Cup that we don't really have any other alternatives this year either. Carrick(30), Lampard(34), Gerrard(31) and Barry(31) are mentioned in everyone's squad.

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Ben Foster has said he won't play for England this summer.

Thank feck for that!

I am sure Parker will recover in time but I imagine Phil Jones will be going as well. It's hard to say with no comment from Hodge.

Lots of talk of Rio and Terry will not both go to the Euros. Not sure if that's true. Whoever doesn't go basically their England career is over. There's no way he can take Rio and not Terry and then Rio step down from England duty, which I don't think is a million miles away and then Terry comes back. If Terry will be part of the World Cup squad then he'd surely leave Rio out in that case regardless of who anyone thinks is better. They're both very good but has Rio got another tournament left in him after this?

I notice Scholes is open to it but tbh I'd rather not. Few games in relatively short space of time .... don't think it's for Scholes. He'd maybe a last 20 mins of games type of guy but is it worth having a guy come in for that? Not that we're blessed with options but let's not just pack it with old timers, eh

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I always have this sense we play some teams just as they're about to start an upward curve and get good. Romania in the late 90s, Norway had a good little side for a few campigns when they stopped us qualifying, Turkey even, Albania gave us problems before anyone knew 'hey, Albania are decent now' and even the likes of Croatia. I have this feeling about Belgium too. A previously good, solid European side that is well down on their luck but have some promising young players knocking about and I think they are about to start an upward curve ... just in time to do us, have Hodgson start off poorly and the media get stuck in.

... a few months later when their qualifying campaign is going well someone will figure 'hey, they're actually not bad, are they'.

Squad on Wednesday, is it?

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Woah, you think a team consisting of Courtois, Kompany, Vermaelen, Verthongen, Defour, Witsel, Dembele, Hazard, De Bruyne and Lukaku could be on an "upward curve"? Tell me more.

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Woah, you think a team consisting of Courtois, Kompany, Vermaelen, Verthongen, Defour, Witsel, Dembele, Hazard, De Bruyne and Lukaku could be on an "upward curve"? Tell me more.

and their **** poor manager left yesterday so it can only get better :p

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Well they're not on much of an upward curve to finish in the top 2 in their group, are they? :D

This is an upward curve in an England sense. I'd imagine Belgium are one of those middling European nations that are largely ignored until they start coming good a la Norway and Romania (even Greece from that 'Beckham game') and as they don't exactly have an impressive list of qualifying results under their belts I'd wager they're probably still under the radar a bit for the English media until they beat us. That's what I am saying

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Horrible some people are thinking of Carrick and Barry and Milner, when we once had Gerrard, Lampard and Scholes.

I think Jones needs to play center midfield, he has been top quality, Gerrard if fit and then Parker. That is a strong midfield.

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Everyone's ignoring the biggest question for me... why on earth is Roy so determined to name his squad of 23 on Wednesday this week?

The UEFA deadline for submitted squads isn't until Tuesday 29th - that's three days after the friendly we have against Norway in Oslo. So why pick a squad blind, without so much as a training session? Nothing to stop him taking 30 to Norway, then spending the week with them all and training with them all before whittling it down to his final 23. He must barely know some of them as it stands. Unless you suspect Pearce / the FA have picked the squad for him and are telling him who he's expected to take.

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Gary Neville has been appointed to the England coaching staff on a four-year contract.

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Gary Neville has been appointed to the England coaching staff on a four-year contract.

source?

1010

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Everyone's ignoring the biggest question for me... why on earth is Roy so determined to name his squad of 23 on Wednesday this week?

why not?

Season's over, the players have nothing to do. Better off getting it out in the open as soon as and douse the circus of speculation that normally does the rounds.

I like the Brazil'94 approach of naming your team 2 weeks before the start of the tournament too. Shows tremendous arrogance and confidence and will have the opposition scratching their balls in fear.

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Haha. Awesome. Nev is awesome.

@Rob, how big will the squad be on Wednesday. It might be the prelimanary type thing. normally that's 27. He might go with 30

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Nah, it's the final squad on Wednesday apparently. They confirmed somewhere that it would only be 23.

Just baffles me, all the other countries involved are naming provisional squads for their friendlies that will then be trimmed down - and their managers all have the benefit of actually having been through qualifiers with the players already.

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why not?

Season's over, the players have nothing to do. Better off getting it out in the open as soon as and douse the circus of speculation that normally does the rounds.

I like the Brazil'94 approach of naming your team 2 weeks before the start of the tournament too. Shows tremendous arrogance and confidence and will have the opposition scratching their balls in fear.

Somehow I don't think any team would be scratching their balls in fear of the England team, no matter how/when the squad will be announced :D

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So now the new coaching staff are Ray Lewington as assistant. Nev as coach and this lad from Brum as a goalkeeping coach. Can’t remember his name. Along with Ray Clemence still

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do we have enough realistic options to be naming a 30 man squad anyway?

Bringing in G Nev such a great move on so many levels

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With The FA's long term goal of promoting from within, Neville must have jumped up somewhat in any consideration for future England manager. (like 2016+)

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Gary Neville joining the team is fine by me. Done his badges and is a sensible guy, doesn't get caught up in hyperbole and has had a 'seen it, done it' career at the top. Will be very interesting.

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With The FA's long term goal of promoting from within, Neville must have jumped up somewhat in any consideration for future England manager. (like 2016+)

Can't be worse than suggestions for Shearer based on ... erm, he was good

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Nah, it's the final squad on Wednesday apparently. They confirmed somewhere that it would only be 23.

Just baffles me, all the other countries involved are naming provisional squads for their friendlies that will then be trimmed down - and their managers all have the benefit of actually having been through qualifiers with the players already.

Odd that he isn't naming like 30 and then maybe meeting up with the squad before knocking it down. Not a massive deal though but you'd think he'd give himself more time but we have wasted so much time already in appointing him maybe acting quicker on the squad gives an air of control

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