Join Now  | 
Home About Contact Us Privacy & Security Advertise
Soccer America Daily Soccer World Daily Special Edition Around The Net Soccer Business Insider College Soccer Reporter Youth Soccer Reporter Soccer on TV Soccer America Classifieds Game Report
Paul Gardner: SoccerTalk Soccer America Confidential Youth Soccer Insider World Cup Watch
RSS Feeds Archives Manage Subscriptions Subscribe
Order Current Issue Subscribe Manage My Subscription Renew My Subscription Gift Subscription
My Account Join Now
Tournament Calendar Camps & Academies Soccer Glossary Classifieds
Why England slipped
by Paul Kennedy, November 23rd, 2007 4:15PM
Subscribe to Soccer America Daily

MOST READ

MOST COMMENTED

Steve McClaren pulled a Greg Ryan Wednesday night. But unlike the Ryan, who lasted 25 days as U.S. women's coach after his team's 4-0 loss to Brazil following his decision to switch goalies, McClaren lasted all of about 12 hours after England's shocking 3-2 loss to Croatia at Wembley before the FA dumped him as coach.

McClaren's decision to drop Paul Robinson, who had started the first 11 qualifiers, in favor of Scott Carson in goal on the final day of qualifying for the 2008 European Championship proved as disastrous as Ryan's decision to drop Hope Solo in favor of Briana Scurry.

Like Scurry, who had the bad luck in Hangzhou to start of her evening with an own goal, Carson had no business playing on Wednesday night. As former Arsenal goalie Bob Wilson described him, Carson looked like a "frightened rabbit." He set the tone for a disastrous evening by letting Niko Kranjcar's long-range shot skip through his gloves in the eighth minute. With England down 2-0 at the half, McClaren would have probably otherwise subbed Carson, but he needed to bring on reinforcements for his sputtering attack.

But similarities between Ryan's U.S. women and McClaren's England don't end there. Both teams have been living off their reputations for some time but have been overtaken in their respective games. The bottom line is that England, like the U.S. women, is overrated.

England came back -- thanks to McClaren's halftime substitutes Jermain Defoe and David Beckham -- to make it 2-2, but the tie it needed to qualify wouldn't last long as Mladen Petric -- give acres of room to shoot, like Kranjcar early in the game -- again beat Carson from distance. Would any team worthy of calling itself a world power have given Petric so much room with the game on the line?

Yes, Carson was at fault (on the first and, to a lesses extent, third goals), but it was in midfield, which decides games these days, England lost its way to Euro '08. Steven Gerrard? Frank Lampard? Big names? Yes. Great players. Hardly.

 



No comments yet.

Sign in to leave a comment. Don't have an account? Join Now




AUTHORS

ARCHIVES
FOLLOW SOCCERAMERICA

Recent Soccer America Daily
What They're Saying: Sunil Gulati    
"Our base-line [for average attendance] was 30,000; 35,000 would've been great, and 40,000 beyond our wildest ...
What They're Saying: Investment banker Keith Harris    
"It was a shock result. There are four players that we can reflect on and the ...
What They're Saying: Megan Rapinoe    
"Gay bars are so important for me and my community. That could have been me. That ...
What They're Saying: Gudmundur Benediktsson    
"It's been quite strange and actually hectic because the phone hasn't stopped ringing. But I'm really ...
MLS: Top fives in Fan XI voting remain steady    
The MLS All-Star Game will be played July 28 in San Jose and every few days ...
MLS Countdown: Rivals wrap up season series early    
The MLS campaign has yet to reach its midpoint yet already teams are facing each other ...
USA-Colombia: Lots at stake in third-place game    
The USA must quickly get back in the saddle after its disastrous semifinal against Argentina when ...
U.S. women: Crunch time to get down to 18    
U.S. women's national team coach Jill Ellis has recalled injured stars Carli Lloyd and Megan Rapinoe, ...
Video Pick: 90 seconds of Messi Magic    
The folks at Fox Soccer created a 90-second montage of Lionel Messi's best touches in Argentina's ...
NASL: Kranjcar leaves Cosmos for Rangers    
Croatian midfielder Niko Kranjcar, who played seven NASL spring season games after joining the New York ...
>> Soccer America Daily Archives