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Outgunned - woeful English

2010-06-28 08:51
Okay, the autopsy starts here. England were simply outclassed - comment by George Dearnaley

Fabio best collect his P45 - his job is over, the Golden Generation were more like the Tin Soldiers, and England are on their way home. Here's why:

1.    Tired players.
The English Premiership is a long, hard, tough league. Throw in the FA Cup and the League Cup matches, as well as Europa League and Champions League matches, and a few World Cup qualifying matches and it’s no wonder the top players are tired. The German Bundesliga takes almost a month off over winter.

2.    Out of form players. Steven Gerrard was terrible this season. Robert Green and Matthew Upson played for West Ham – they almost got relegated. David James played for Portsmouth – they did get relegated. Emile Heskey scored 3 goals the whole season. Gareth Barry was out injured the last few months of the league season. Ledley King has one knee. Wayne Rooney has not scored a goal since March, when he was injured against Bayern Munich.

3.    Being a slave to a formation. Never be a slave to your formation. You can’t play a 4-4-2 if you don’t have natural wingers. Capello stuck to 4-4-2 without a natural left sided winger. He also tried to accommodate Lampard and Gerrard, but played Stevie G wide on the left, or tried to. Lampard scored 20 goals for Chelsea as an attacking midfielder this season – so Capello played him as a defensive midfielder? Rooney and Defoe could have worked but they looked like strangers fumbling around in the dark together. They needed games together.

4.    Lack of pace. This is the most important of the four reasons. Out of the entire England squad, only Jermaine Defoe possesses pure pace. That’s why the German defence played so deep – afraid of his pace. But the rest of the squad looked like they had pianos on their backs. Matthew Upson! Gareth Barry! John Terry! Glen Johnson and Ashley Cole have some pace and are great attacking full backs but they don’t defend with pace – they were slow getting back and slow in making decisions.

Rooney has explosive pace – but not this Rooney, who looked a shadow of the great league player. I’m not really a big fan of Theo Walcott but he has blistering pace. The modern game is all about pace. Any defender worth his salt will drop deep off a quick player and this allows the quick player space, which equals time to make decisions. England lacked pace, they lacked natural width and they were completely outplayed.

Out-passed. Out-run. Out-fought. Out-thought. Out-manoeuvred. Out-gunned. OUT!

I could go on about too many quality foreign internationals playing in the Premiership which means young English talent doesn’t get exposed to the game at the highest domestic level.

I could go on about English kids learning to hammer the ball forward in the mud and rain at an early age instead of learning to control and pass the ball.

I’d much rather say what an absolutely amazing performance exhibited by the Germans – technically better in every department. The second half counter-attacking tactic played to perfection. Sublime passing and movement off the ball – always a supporting player available.

And the average age is only 23! Be afraid everyone, be very afraid. Ze Germans are coming!!!

George Dearnaley played for Bafana in 1992/93 and was top goal scorer in SA in 1992. He is loving the World Cup but hates players who fake being injured to get other players sent off. He also thinks half the referees are rubbish. His money is on Argentina!

George Dearnaley will be writing exclusively for Sport24 for the duration of the Soccer World Cup.

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