FanDuel - WFBC

September 07, 2005

Northern Ireland beat England: for the first time in 80 years. England's World Cup qualification may now be at risk. Sven accused of tactical ineptitude and inability to motivate his players. But how about those (northern) Irish, eh?

posted by owlhouse to soccer at 10:11 PM - 20 comments

On the one hand, is this (and the Wales game on Saturday) more evidence that Sven has no master plan? On the other hand, this is the first WC qualification game that he has lost. Well, I suppose if he was any good, Lazio wouldn't have sacked him, right?

posted by owlhouse at 10:14 PM on September 07

The crowd at Windsor Park were singing a song which asked "Can you hear England sing?" - as a Northern Irishman living in England, I stuck my head out the front door and confirmed their subsequent assertion - I couldn't hear a fucking thing, frankly. The highlight for me was the BBC commentary after the goal: John Motson: "I... I can't believe what I'm seeing, Graham. I think I might be speechless. What do you think?" Graham Le Saux: "Yes, John, I think you might be!"

posted by JJ at 06:42 AM on September 08

Not a lot to say really. We were woeful, they were well-organised. England got nothing more or less than they deserved. Well done NI. I think I'll concentrate on the cricket instead. Oh for God's sake! 3 wickets down already?

posted by squealy at 06:48 AM on September 08

One thing I can never understand is how if you lose one game everyone goes batty and starts calling for Sven's head, etc. It was a qualifier - they'll still qualify. Still good on the N. Irish though.

posted by WeedyMcSmokey at 07:52 AM on September 08

One thing I can never understand is how if you lose one game everyone goes batty and starts calling for Sven's head It's just the English disease, we beat someone we'll be world champions next year, we lose to someone, we're the worst in the world and the manager should be sacked. It's just the way we are. But he should be sacked. 5 million quid for watching football every weekend, picking whoever The Sun (or Mr. Beckham) tells you to pick and then getting a mate (Steve McLaren) to do the team talk at half time. Er, can I have that job please? Good on the Irish, we deserved a thumping for that performance.

posted by BigCalm at 08:44 AM on September 08

The Windsor Park crowd were amazing and the Irish were really up for this game. England looked flat and acted like they couldn't be bothered, much as they did against Wales. Good job to Northern Ireland....their second win in four years was also their second in five days. They absolutely deserved these points...and that crowd...the supporters really were amazing. I can't get that one song out of my head... 'Are you Scotland Are you Scotland Are you Scotland in disguise? Are you Scotland in disguise? Are you Scotland ...'

posted by Texan_lost_in_NY at 09:46 AM on September 08

Usually a song the English supporters sing, no? Heh.

posted by gspm at 10:59 AM on September 08

Thats not the first time they beat them in 80 years, just the first time in Windsor Park for 80 years. They beat England in England some time in the 70s.

posted by StarFucker at 11:09 AM on September 08

Usually a song the English supporters sing, no? Heh. Ohhhh...the irony!

posted by Texan_lost_in_NY at 11:33 AM on September 08

I think the US Coca-Cola Ranking is gonna be way higher than England's now. HAH!

posted by worldcup2002 at 12:53 PM on September 08

England may qualify but the recent results do justify some questioning of SGE. Wasn't the 4-1 loss to Denmark enough of a wakeup call? I basically think it comes down to not having Beckham, Lampard and Gerrard all on the field together any more because Becks cannot provide the necessary speed on the right flank. If I were picking the team you'd see two of SWP, Jermaine Defoe and Joe Cole on the flanks and the two best in form of those other three in the middle. Kaka2002, don't be so boastful. What good is it when we couldn't do better than 0-0 at Guatemala with their two best players missing? I know we had the second XI playing but that performance was pretty sad in my eyes. (And fecking Disney, I hate them, skipping the first 24 minutes to show extra innings of a baseball game.)

posted by billsaysthis at 03:37 PM on September 08

Are you Scotland in disguise? But at the same time, Scotland were winning 2-1 in Oslo, keeping their (admittedly thin) hopes alive.

posted by owlhouse at 05:53 PM on September 08

I basically think it comes down to not having Beckham, Lampard and Gerrard all on the field together any more...If I were picking the team you'd see two of SWP, Jermaine Defoe and Joe Cole They were all on the field with Lampard and Gerrard doing player impersonations while Beckham played out of position in defensive midfield, same as against Wales. Joe Cole and SWP started; both were ineffective and subbed out. Eriksson has to do a better job with this talent or the FA need to find someone who will. The issue now is with two qualifiers remaining before the play-offs, how much rope does Sven have? I would think quite a bit by the FA's history of glacial decision-making. If they sleep on this too long, England might not be in Germany. What good is it when we couldn't do better than 0-0 at Guatemala with their two best players missing? I know we had the second XI playing but that performance was pretty sad in my eyes. Absolutely true and the only good things about the win over Mexico was the fact our boys worked their socks off and got a result, that's it. The quality of the performance was absolute crap and we will get crushed in Germany if we don't stop playing like a Steve Sampson team...lots of huffing and puffing with little to show for it. We didn't string 5 passes together once...not once...against Mexico. We don't need a bunch of Frankie Hejduks (that's Robbie Savage to you Brits) running around like chickens with their heads cut off. We need for Reyna to slow the game down, stand on the fucking ball and make a decision. And having two players up front waiting around for the perfect pass is unacceptable. OK...McBride will outwork anyone...but he has to be there for more than flicking the ball on with his head. I'm really disappointed in the way Donovan is playing, going back to the friendly vs. England and the Gold Cup. He's almost playing like he has a sense of entitlement, and we don't need to see that shit from any player until he plays his retirement game. As a U.S. fan, I'm pissed off and expect more from these guys, including the coaches.

posted by Texan_lost_in_NY at 06:16 PM on September 08

Someone needs to have a word in Sven's ear - "Pick your best eleven, not your eleven best, you Swedish turnip."

posted by JJ at 06:08 AM on September 09

I was just kidding, bill. Turn on the sarcasmfilter.

posted by worldcup2002 at 06:32 PM on September 09

Yeah, Texan, except for the goals, which were well-worked and well-taken, I'm not sure there was that much difference in the teams. Except for the runs down the wing, and Beasley's speed, I'm not sure there were a lot of penetrating plays overall.

posted by worldcup2002 at 06:34 PM on September 09

*admits to missing the humor and the actual England stating XI, hangs head in shame* I guess I just didn't realize that SGE would put Cole, SWP, Lampard, Beckham and Gerrard all on the field together. I will no longer be asking myself WWSGED, that's for sure. The result against Mexico was earned in my book. We outworked them and the backline was in sync. During the Guatemala mess Marcelo and JP dellaCrapa kept repeating that Arena has 13 players in the book and 10 undecided but I think Arena was saying that for effect. He knows at least 20 guys going to Germany barring injury. The big question for me is if Eddie Johnson, McBride, Twellman, Conor Casey, maybe Brian Ching, and Landon are all healthy and playing well, does he push Landon back into an attacking midfield spot with license to roam and poach? That the best use of LD IMO. What do you guys think?

posted by billsaysthis at 08:08 PM on September 10

Note to Sven: being England manager isn't the same as running a fantasy football team.

posted by etagloh at 03:54 AM on September 11

billy...I definitely agree Donovan is more effective as an attacking midfielder. As much as I like Brian Ching when he's healthy, I think Eddie Johnson and McBride make the best pairing up top. Johnson still has a lot to learn (he's only been playing the game 12 years) but his speed makes him too dangerous...again...if he's healthy. I hope I didn't infer that we didn't deserve the result against Mexico. I thought we outplayed them but just think we can do better. Gooch was very strong in defense but overall I thought the back line allowed themselves to become disorganized and stretched when it wasn't necessary. If anyone recorded the game, have a look at it and watch how many times the U.S. back four was flat across the back, or even within 3 yards of each other in a horizontal line. Obviously, they're not statues and shouldn't stand in a row for 90 minutes, but an organized flat back four is a pretty good indication of how disciplined your defense is...and ours isn't. Just another thing to work on in the next 9 months. I think Kasey Keller deserves mention for his play in 2005. IMHO, he's playing the best an American goalkeeper has ever played...ever. In the Mexico game, they had one shot on goal in each half. The save Keller made at the end of the first half was crucial to keep the score even and knock any glimmer of confidence out of Mexico. We don't do so well against quality opposition when we have to come from behind and saves like that are often overlooked, but it was huge in getting the result, and he's made a number of those throughout qualifying. I think 'keeper is the one position where we can make an argument of having the best in the world. One Mexico player that deserves note is Borgetti...and not for anything good...what a dirty f*cking player this guy is. Did anyone see the rabbit punches he was laying into Berhalter's kidneys before free kicks? This guy has been known to be a dirty f*ck over the years but he takes it to a new level against the U.S. Now that he's the first Mexican to ever play in the EPL, I'm interested to see if tries to pull that crap. I would love to see him have a go at say...Tomas Repka. Would make for an interesting toe-to-toe.

posted by Texan_lost_in_NY at 01:06 PM on September 13

Tex, I agree that Johnson will start over Ching but I included him as part of the depth Arena will surely want if Landon is to be deployed as A-M. Keller, great play--string after lengthy string of scoreless minutes--but for some reason wasn't ever able to reach the top with a club side. 2-3 years ago he was considered among the better EPL keepers but played with a bad team and now in Germany, well, what can you say.

posted by billsaysthis at 03:13 PM on September 13

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