England Out – So Who’s To Blame?

So England go out again from a major tournament, again from the Quarter Finals and again, on penalties.

But is it the same old story?

Last night, for a long time, I was really gutted we went out. In the past, once it got to penalties you just knew we were going to bottle it, but last night I actually believed. I actually thought that we would beat Italy on penalties, and get to the semi-finals.

But yet again, it wasn’t to be.

Usually I am frustrated by England when they go out of a major tournament but today I just feel proud. I don’t know what it is, whether the expectations were lower than usual, that we played within our capabilities and go the best out of the players or whether it was because Hodgson has given England a bit of dignity again.

But now we’re out the blame game has started. People are already slating Roy Hodgson for his “negative” tactics, Wayne Rooney for disrupting a team that was playing well, and Ashley Young and Ashley Cole for their penalty misses.

I don’t understand the criticism Hodgson is receiving. He knows very well that our players are technically inferior and I don’t blame him one bit for using “Chelsea tactics” in Euro 2012. I agree with him that this was the best way to get the most out of the players and I was a bit miffed at the BBC’s expert punditry when they said England were lucky to get the game to penalties and didn’t deserve to win the game on spot kicks anyway.

Er… excuse me! Wasn’t that England’s game plan? Just because Chelsea did better with their penalties than England doesn’t mean England didn’t deserve to win. There’s this strange notion that more possession and prettier football wins games. As every Arsenal fan has know over the last 15 years is that the team playing the more attractive and attacking football doesn’t always win. I my eyes, if you get a lucky win you deserve it – you have taken your chances when they’ve come to you. And if you’ve had 70% of the ball and not scored then you only have yourself to blame – what did people want, England to let Italy score?

England are average and I am happy they managed to get the game to penalties. So what if they rode their luck? Greece won Euro 2004 and they had a game plan, system and the players to make it work. This is knockout football and the most important thing is setting your team out to get to the next round – and for me Roy Hodgson did that.

You can’t blame the penalty takers, although Ashley Young had a terrible tournament. And I would have liked to see Theo or Andy Carroll take one instead. Young did not look confident at all stepping up (neither did Cole, strangely) and before they even took their kicks I knew they would miss. Even Johnson would have been better option, and I’m not sure if the players volunteered or were told to take penalties. You’re better giving them to players that want to take one.

Wayne Rooney is a tough one. He’s a top player but the argument is he hasn’t done it for England. And England have looked bright up front with Welbeck and Carroll – players that have no fear going into their first big international tournament. But Hodgson would have been lynched if he didn’t play Rooney so he didn’t have much choice starting him for the last 2 games.

So who’s to blame for England’s exit?

Andrea Pirlo, someone that after taking THAT penalty deserves a lot of man love.


8 thoughts on “England Out – So Who’s To Blame?

  1. People have the right to see teams who can actually play in semi finals and finals. Europe has that right. England were abject. They defended well but offered nothing (NOTHING) in the way of entertainment. Last night was a mercy killing because the Germans would’ve spanked us…and rightly so. Why do you people do this to yourselves every two years? All this, we can win this thing bullshit. Is it your age? I hate to sound patronising but when you’ve been largely disappointed by the national side for pretty much four decades you kinda get the message.
    When this coutry produces more than a couple of Wilshires/Oxlade Chamberlains in a generation and actually gets players to perform at the same level internationally as they would do for their clubs then might be an appropriate time to hope for something. Until then you’re just being as deluded as those scouse idiots who recently voted Gerrard in an ‘all time WORLD XI’. All time fucking WORLD XI? Stevie isn’t fit to clean the boots of the world’s truly great players.

  2. We are just not good enough, we need to change our philosophy about how we play football if we are ever to compete with the top nations. As an Arsenal fan I am even more aware as Arsene will only entertain players that are comfortable with the ball at his feet , we need more Wilsheres and Oxlade Chamberlains if we are ever to properly again. In all of the games we barely strung 2 passes together, we always gave it back to the opposition. Just think what would have happened if we were playing Germany last night, 5,6,7,8 or more conceded, we would have been dead and buried by half time. Finally our “saviour” Rooney, why are the press being so gentle about his performance, he was absolute rubbish, couldn’t pass,shoot, head, or go past anyone, the most over rated player in the tournament, he should have come off at half time at the latest

  3. Who/what is to blame? Well, probably the FA’s lack of vision. Someone at the FA should be humble enough to visit a few small countries like Holland, Portugal and Croatia to see how they coach their youngsters. Maybe on the way back pop into Spain, France and Germany to see how they do it. I have the feeling that the FA still think they invented the game and therefore other countries can’t teach them anything. Oh and the BBC needs to get rid of their MOTD oafs with their ‘they don’t like it up them’ and ‘good old English grit’ and replace them with punters who actually appreciate the beautiful game. Maybe then we’ll get a change of attitude favouring football based on technique.

  4. They can blame lack of signing or lack of football brain or lack of grit to grind the result and the list is endless, ask pundits.
    England players are overrated period. England need to start training young kids the right way on how to play football. Almost all Spanish teams play passing football without relying on physical strength to dominate the opposition.
    Chelsea tactics will in few occasions succeed and if it does, its pure luck. The rugby tactics employed and entertained by EPL referees is will never allow England to have good players to succeed at international level

  5. We will not succeed at international level for one simple reason. The Premier League is a multi national league, which in my eyes is great, but it does hold English talent back. The Italian, Spanish, French and German Leagues are predominantly comprised of home grown talent. It is the price we pay for being the best league in the world.

  6. Englang is to blame for:
    1. thinking they are good enough
    2. thinking Ashley young is better than Theo
    3. For always slating Theo when he is there best performer. Name one who perform better then him.
    4. For not having the guts to allow coaches to drop Rooney, Gerrad, Lampard, Terry, you get the picture

    Roy is to blame for not trusting in the player that single-handily took him to the quarters Theo Walcott

  7. I disagree. I think that international football more than any other gas an obligation to try and play. Italy are a poor side, as poor an Italian side as I have seen and yet they completely out played England.

    That tournament like the 2 before it would have been better using the best young players. What benefit was Milner? Terry? And if Lampard was fit he would have played. The ox, theo, and Henderson if good enough to take should have played from the start.

    Plus any team that plays John Terry deserves nothing



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