Euro 2008: Do You Think We’re Being Missed?

June 14, 2008

Euro 2008 Squads

I don’t know about you but I’m thoroughly enjoying Euro 2008. It’s not just the absence of that impending sense of doom that surrounds following England in major tournaments. You know the painful 1-1 draw in the first group game, the last minute winner against the undrerdogs and the inevitable penalty shoot out defeat. No, it’s not the lack of reports of England “supporters” destroying a small Austrian village in a xenophobic, beer fuelled ramapge. No, not the masses of St George Crosses that appear on cars and houses across the land (you never actually see them on St Georges day). None of these things are making this one of the most enjoyable tournaments in some time, IT’S THE FOOTBALL.

The wonderful Dutch, total football reborn. Is that really Giovanni van Bronckhorst running the full length of the pitch to score? Sneijder, van Nistelrooy and then there’s Arjen Robben, Mourinho ended up not trusting and then selling this magical footballer, he really wasn’t special was he? God help the rest of Europe if Robben ends up on the opposite wing to Ronaldo for Real Madrid!

Talking of Ronaldo there’s Portugal, an entertaining, attacking side who back themselves to score more than the opposition. Deco in the midfield and Pepe at the back (also now with Real Madrid, how much is a season ticket at the Bernabeu?)  Both teams are just a pleasure to watch, fluid attacking football, fantastic on the break and full of genuinely talented footballers.

Add the ruthless Germans, the unpredictable French, the inspired Spanish, the spirit, desire and skill of the Croatians. In fact take out the two host countries and every team has a quality and attitude that puts our overpaid, pampered and by comparison talentless English stars to shame. The Swedes and Rumanians play to their strengths with passion. The Greeks and Turks give a shit and despite an apparent lack of talent managed to qualify and have given a good account of themselves. Switzerland and Austria are out of their depth but I would still give them both a fair chance against England.

Ask yourself how many of our “stars” would warrant a starting place in any of the expected quarter finalists teams? Is Rooney as good as Podolski or Villa? Where is our Torres, Henry, Toni or even Ibrahimovic? Joe Cole our only truly expressive player falls a million miles short of Ronaldo, Robben and Ribery. How about “Super Frank” and “Stevie G”? Their lack of mobility, creativity, flair, basic control and possession leaves them trailing in the wake of Deco, Fabregas, Sneijder, Modric, Ballack, Xavi……shall I go on? OK how about JT? The footballing lump of wood, immobile, no apparent skill on the ball and little pace, he might just replace Senderos in the middle of the Swiss defence but apart from that he is a footballing dinosaur in this company. The only English player who would warrant a place in most of these teams is the impeccable, hugely skillful and grossly underappreciated in his own country, Rio Ferdinand.

So as the group stages come to and end I can’t wait for the quarter finals, exicitng, attacking, skillful football played at a frightening pace. No not the English Premiership but the best of the Premiership without the English. We might have the best league in the world, you could argue we have the best clubs, but the best players? I don’t think so.

Mr Capello must be looking forward to the qualifiers but I for one don’t expect us to beat Croatia once, never mind twice but you know what I could quite get used to watching major tournaments without England it really is much more fun!


7 Responses to “Euro 2008: Do You Think We’re Being Missed?”

  1. Patrick Says:

    Mutu is another skilful player and actually in all fairness, I think you’re doing Romania and Sweden a disservice. Romania went for it vs Italy and Sweden as well as Ibrahimovich also have the skilful Kallstrom, both Larssons and when fit,the pacy Wilhelmsson.

  2. Chris Says:

    I totally agree with the article and there seems something a bit perverse that Wayne Rooney is getting married at this time, he should be watching these games, studying each one like a hawk and learning from it instead he seems more interested in getting his picture in the magazines.

    Also the England team must shake off the arrogance, its along time since they won the World Cup and the way football on this planet is played has changed so much.

    Many people (including Sven) thought that when the qalifiers for Euro 2008 were made, that the England team would easily qualify, but there was a minority who thought that it wouldnt be so easy and it proved to be the case. If England still have the attitude that they will easily qualify for the World cup in SA then sadly for them, they won’t.

  3. Tubbo & Dubba Tubba Says:

    You know, that really makes you think. Sorta deep, kinda like that one guy who was all like “Who are we? Where are we going? Why are we here?”

    Anyway, check out our site for some “deep” humor. It’s awesome.

    See ya ’round,
    ~The Tubbo Twins.

    P.S. Did you notice the little wavy thing (~) in front of our name? Isn’t that a nice touch?

  4. ~SaKeTH Says:


    Another English player i can think of is Theo Walcott.
    Would fit snugly into the effective substitute role in the Netherlands Outfit..

    You agree?

  5. wordsfromblueskies Says:

    I agree English player aren’t as good as many claim, but they’re nowhere near as bad as you say. The Champions League for the past few years gives solid evidence that the Premiership boasts the best clubs in the world at the moment, and the starting line up for England is a huge part of that. What would Liverpool have done for the past 5 years with no Steven Gerrard? Or Chelsea without Terry, Lampard, Cole, etc. I think there were 10 English players in the Champions League final this year, contested between two English clubs.

    The problem is getting these players to perform together in a team they only spend a few days with before each match.

    As for this tournament, there has been some great football, Spain look fantastic (but then again they often do in the early stages), The Dutch look almost unstoppable at times, but there has also been some very uninspiring play, you must have missed Italy and France’s attempts against Romania the way you’re showering praise on the football on show.

    Personally I’m watching some good football and enjoying it, but not half as much as I would if I cared about the outcome.

  6. FPB Says:

    great posting d. i’ve really enjoyed the tourno without england. so this is what it’s like to support scotland!

    some spoof E 2008 interviews back at the blog!

  7. Trevor Says:

    I’m a fan of your blog. Great layout. Are you going to be updating it more often?

    If you are going to keep blogging, I have an idea you might like. Shoot me an e-mail for more info.


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