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England - Euro 2016 Thread


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Well done England. 10 out of 10 without any over the top expectations or hype.

The pool of players is probably the weakest its ever been but we have a bunch of good adaptable players who all seem to understand the roles in the team and the tactics.

Hopefully we can keep a good run going for the friendlies and take that form into the tournament

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I look forward to the build up where everyone (well, the press) will pretend to be realistic about our chances before going mental when we go out acting like we should get to the final.

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Are you familiar with how sports and sports fans in general work?

The reality is and probably always has been, about 3 country's press can be all happy and positive and the rest of the world have to be miserable and 'realistic'. You don't sell a lot of papers like that. Nothing wrong with being positive. The problem I have is the assigning blame and tearing people down after the fact when things don't go well

Build it up, sell it but then go 'awwww, damn, we're out' followed by underperforming/should have done better/penalties' rather than ripping into everyone associated

I also don't think the media did that at all when we went out at the last World Cup, no one acted like we should get to the final at all

My favourite is the talk of 'root and branch' reform in the leagues, coaches, pathway for players which is completely forgotten when the transfer window opens and they get to talk about all the money being spent on all those midtable European players coming into midtable English clubs and then be amazed when there are hardly any English players in the starting line ups ... well, how on earth did this happen!!

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I'm delighted we won every game. Always wanted to see us do that. Still annoyed from when we messed it up against Ukraine under Capello. Sure it wasn't the toughest group but it shows some kind of resolution and determination. It's good to see.

Now we can start planning for the Euros. No idea what to expect. I suspect we'll have a much better idea once these next batch of friendlies take place. Hopefully better then the last set of pre tournement friended we had.

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The pool of players is probably the weakest its ever been.

While true in some ways, I think in terms of wingers and no.10's we have some really good technical ability, more than we've had in a long time. Going deeper from those positions, there's also the likes of Shaw, Stones and Shelvey who are players who are more than comfortable on the ball.

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Are you familiar with how sports and sports fans in general work?

The reality is and probably always has been, about 3 country's press can be all happy and positive and the rest of the world have to be miserable and 'realistic'. You don't sell a lot of papers like that. Nothing wrong with being positive. The problem I have is the assigning blame and tearing people down after the fact when things don't go well

Build it up, sell it but then go 'awwww, damn, we're out' followed by underperforming/should have done better/penalties' rather than ripping into everyone associated

I also don't think the media did that at all when we went out at the last World Cup, no one acted like we should get to the final at all

My favourite is the talk of 'root and branch' reform in the leagues, coaches, pathway for players which is completely forgotten when the transfer window opens and they get to talk about all the money being spent on all those midtable European players coming into midtable English clubs and then be amazed when there are hardly any English players in the starting line ups ... well, how on earth did this happen!!

My point was massively exaggerated, I know papers weren't actually suggesting we could get to the final :D I was making a bit of a joke, if I was making an actual discussion point I'd make a lot of the points you bring up, particularly the ripping into everyone being associated.

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While true in some ways, I think in terms of wingers and no.10's we have some really good technical ability, more than we've had in a long time. Going deeper from those positions, there's also the likes of Shaw, Stones and Shelvey who are players who are more than comfortable on the ball.

I agree. We have nice options with our attacking players.

It's the midfield base duo that is a concern. Seems like we've tried so many different players there under Roy (even Cleverley notched up a few caps under him). It's where we lack the most quality so I wish we'd just have settled partnership and stuck with it. Unfortunately injuries have messed that up a bit. Henderson and Carrick behind Barkley is what I'd go with but Carrick doesn't seem favoured (and has injury problems) and I'm not sure when Henderson is fit again.

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Especially as we are seeded and could get a fairly favourable draw.

And most 3rd placed teams are also going through in the tournament anyway.

Only 8 of the 24 teams get knocked out in the group stages.

I think England are very likely to qualify from the groups. The 2nd round is where they'll likely begin to falter.

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England will not qualify from the group stage. Remember this comment.

So you can bring it up when it happens but then pass it off as a throw away comment when it doesn't.

Fantastic work skip.

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England will not qualify from the group stage. Remember this comment.

I might choose to remember something that has some relevance, like the players and off field team that produced a perfect qualification record.

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"England have made an easy group look easy". erm.

True though isn't it? Winning 10 out of 10 is good, but it doesn't give us any clue as to how we'll play against a Germany/Spain etc because we've not played anyone remotely near their quality.

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True though isn't it? Winning 10 out of 10 is good, but it doesn't give us any clue as to how we'll play against a Germany/Spain etc because we've not played anyone remotely near their quality.

I don't think anybody is saying 'England could do well, look at how well they did in qualifying'. It's a formality now that anybody talking about England this year have to mention 'but the opposition are rubbish'. But you can only beat who's put in front of you. We all know the true test is these friendlies we've got coming up. Doesn't mean we can't be pleased with doing something only 3 teams have ever done in Euro qualifiers and the first time England have done it.

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I'm going to have to contradict my usual stance here as well as what I said yesterday and say that actually. If everybody is fit, it really will be difficult to choose that final 23, especially one that everybody would agree on. Obviously Theres a long way to go in the season so its be impossible to call now, the usual suspects will probably get injured anyway but I can sense we'll have a bit of a drama come the summer about players that haven't been taken to France!

Also even though I said that it's the worst pool of players to pick from in history (or at least the thinnest) there is some element of cohesion and a team in them which feels better than going into other major tournaments, the fluidity going forward is great and it doesn't seem to rely on particular players having to play which I hope is a positive

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I'm not sure I agree with the it's the weakest pool of players we've had for decades argument.

What I think it is, is the weakest pool of midfielders we've had for decades.

We've got a couple of good goalkeepers, some good wingers/number 10s, passable defenders and Kane and Sturridge are good forwards, but our midfield looks so uninspiring. Players like Milner, Carrick and Henderson are good at what they do but there all too similar and they aren't going to boss any games or create much.

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Sat through all 90 minutes last night - not sure how, one of the most turgid 3-0 wins i'll ever see...

Absolutely no urgency, tempo or directness. No-one even tried to take the game by the scruff of the neck and up the work-rate. How JJ Shelvey even gets near the squad I have NO idea...

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Shelvey is a good premier league player but he's far from established at the international level.

Barkley gives the ball away too much at the moment to play in midfield, he needs to be further forward. He's got a lot of learning to do but hopefully he'll come good.

Wilshere is required, I'd like to see him in midfield alongside Milner/Henderson. Shame we don't have a more reliable ball winner there.

I question whether *any* of them have a good enough football brain to cope with the top sides.

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what's everyone's preferable starting line up for the first game in France? A long way off but i'd like to see:

GK: Hart - obvious

RB: Clyne - Best RB by far, I just bloody hope Hodgson doesn't try to shoe-horn Jones or Stones into the spot. Might be a little bit suspect defending against better opposition, and he's very inexperienced but he's best we have in that position and a million times better than Walker.

LB: Baines - I don't think Shaw's going to be fit, even if he is I just don't see how he's going to be 100% by the summer so that leaves Baines with his swansong. I worry about him at this level, but he's better than the rest when he's in form and offers a set piece option

CB: Stones - Yes he's inexperienced, but he really looks the part. Has everything, it's about time we started to build that defence around him.

CB: Smalling - Has been England's best defender this year and looks like an absolute rock. LVG's done wonders with him. Jags is too slow, and Cahill just isn't good enough.

DM: Carrick - I read somewhere that he's got something like 33 caps spread over 15 years. Which is crazy. He's injured a lot, so probably won't make it, but i'd like to see him sitting deep and using his calming presence and experience in a tournament. Not that it means anything, but he deserves it.

CM: Wilsher - His performances on the back end of last season were some of the best in an England shirt from a midfielder for a long long time. Our best midfielder but again probably won't be fit.

CM: Henderson - His energy and drive is going to be vital in the summer. I'd probably prefer to see him interchange with Barkley and Ox depending on the strength of the opposition.

AM/LW: Sterling - Our best best and most explosive player. Form's not great right now, but one of the few players who has defenders ******** it and can create chances out of nothing.

FC/W: Rooney - Honestly believe it's his last tournament, don't think he's going through a blip, he's regressed and just isn't the same player. He's still our best and most consistent striker, so he's got to start. If he's turd in the first couple of games, I'd like to see him dropped, but it won't happen.

FC/W: Sturridge - Toss up between him and Walcott for me. I think Walcott might be better served coming off the bench in the tournament, Sturridge is always a goal threat and so clinical. Fitness is a worry as always, if he's fit and scoring in the league, he's got to start for me. Not sure how that works in Roy's 4-3-3 formation, maybe a diamond?

We have so many players prone to injury, it's going to be quite nervy build up, but I think if everyone's fit we've got a good chance of progressing past the 2nd round. We should get out of the groups easily, it's **** easy under this format. After from Germany, Spain and Belgium, I reckon we're 4th favourites ;)

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