Category Archives: England

International Friendlies: HE IS ZLATAN!

Image: Michael Regan/Getty Images Europe.

There are few superlatives you can shower upon Zlatan Ibrahimovic that he hasn’t already liberally bathed himself in.

Still, like everyone else with a vague interest in football and a deadline to meet this morning, we’ll give it a go.

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Andrew Strauss: Form Is Temporary, Class Is Permanent

Image: Stupid is as stupid doos, as they in South Africa. Don’t they?

Kevin Pietersen might have the kind of flair on the cricket pitch that prompts the ECB to pick him regardless of the embarrassment his activities cause, but Andrew Strauss has so far been the one to demonstrate who is the real class act in the revamped side.

Strauss was insulted in a series of text messages from Pietersen to members of the South African team in August, but in an interview earlier this week he told BBC SportKevin sounds contrite and he realises he’s made some mistakes. Now is the time for everyone to look forward.”

It would be interesting to see whether Pietersen would have been so gracious if Strauss had been the one pressing the buttons.

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Joe Hart: Most Wanted

Image: Michael Regan/Getty Images Europe.

You wish, Arsene. You wish.

Andy Carroll: Supping In The Last Chance Saloon

Image: Clive Brunskill/Getty Images.

On Sunday night, it was reported that Liverpool had rejected a proposed loan deal from Andy Carroll’s former club Newcastle United. Carroll, who is 23, has failed to live up to the promise that persuaded Liverpool to make a last minute £35m bid for him in the January 2011 transfer window, and in recent months, the club have made no secret of the fact that they would be happy to off-load the striker.
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England Fans: Showing Their Class, If Not Their Fashion Sense

Image: AP Photo/Sergei Chuzavkov.

England fans turned out for a friendly fixture vs. Ukraine last week wearing t-shirts supporting imprisoned former Ukraine Prime Minister Yulia Tymoshenko.

There’s no particular reason to publish this, other than it’s one in the eye for those who believe that English football fans represent the worst of the ill-informed, apathetic masses the country has to offer.

They don’t. Although I’m prepared to concede the point that wearing chain mail to play football is the behaviour of a lunatic.

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Wayne Rooney: Follicular Formation

Image: REUTERS/Nigel Roddis.

Solid at the back, lacking depth in the midfield and quite a lot of uncertainty upfront.

How unfortunate that Wayne Rooney’s new haircut actually mirrors England’s recent international performances.

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England vs. France: Sparks In The Dark

Images:  FRANCK FIFE/AFP/GettyImages, Lars Baron/Getty Images.

Given England’s past form in major tournaments , it would not have been unreasonable of fans to have seen Ray Clemence’s pre-match injury as a portent of doom. The goalkeeping coach snapped his achilles tendon before England’s opening Euro 2012 fixture vs. France, bringing the number of Roy Hodgson’s staff who have succumbed to injury before a ball is kicked in anger to five.

Fortunately, everyone else survived the journey from the pitch to the changing room and back, and ten minutes later, with media hype and optimism at a new and refreshing low, kicked off against a team who hadn’t tasted defeat in 21 international fixtures.

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