Entries in wayne rooney (5)
I should've done this post ages ago, but between being busy with real work and forgetting to update my blog, it's been delayed until now, four days after it started. I think this Euro is a lot more open that most people think, and we could be in for a surprise come the final. The favourites, the Netherlands and Germany have been less than impressive, especially the former, while Spain struggled to draw against Italy. I actually fancy the latter, as they always seem to perform amidst match fixing scandals, so they could very well make the final.
The other team that looks good is Russia. Unless a team from group D do better, they have been the most impressive team so far lead by young striker Alan Dzagoev and a reborn Andrei Arshavin (why can't he ever play that way for Arsenal??). I reckon they are real outsiders. They definitely go through, and then if they come up against Holland like in last Euro anything could happen.
The other issue I want to talk about is England. Today they face France, which for the media in the UK will go one of two ways. A win and we will become instant favourites to win and the best team in the tournament, a loss and Hodgson should never have been hired and we will be knocked out in the group stages. In no other country is the media like that, and you can guarantee and erratic response whatever the result.
I would not have taken Rooney, instead I would have taken Kevin Davies, Grant Holt or Gary Hooper, as I feel that while they do not have the international experience, they get you goals, and most importantly will be able to play the two first games. Carroll should start against France, as if we're adopting a defensive approach we may as well go the whole way. Defoe would have been my first choice but I think with the events of the past week he won't be in the right state of mind, so it's best for the first game he sits out before returning later.
Who is the best striker in England? Before he moved to Liverpool, I said Andy Carroll, however that's clearly no longer the case. For me, the best striker in England now is Wayne Rooney, which is the general opinion. However only just. Jermaine Defoe certainly scores more than him (when he plays), and that brings me on to the point of this post. Everybody hates Jermain. Trust me, I'm an Arsenal fan, but I've always though Defoe to be one of the best goal getters in the world. He doesn't possess the creativity Rooney, has, but for goal scoring, Jermain is your man. Here are some cold hard stats to prove many Jermain haters wrong. Based on the last five Tottenham wins he has played at least 45 minutes in:
Tottenham 3-1 Stevenage: Scores twice.
Tottenham 1-0 Watford: Had several shots on target, test goalkeeper. Subbed at 80 mins
Tottenham 3-0 Cheltenham: Scores.
Tottenham 1-0 West Brom: Scores winning goal.
Tottenham 4-0 Shamrock: Scores.
I had to go all the way back to December for that last fixture, which just shows you how little he's played. Red knapp seemingly has a problem with him, as his performances have been nothing but top class. Would he be on the plane to the Euro? It's a no brainier, to quote Harry himself. Should he be the starting striker with Rooney? Definitely.
Let's also remember something here: he's the only reason England even got through the group stages at the 2010 World Cup, so the whole nation should really be thanking him for what was a bloody good finish. He's the best England got, and if I managed in the Premier League, I would've already raided Tottenham for some incredibly overlooked players they possess and never play (Gomes, Kranjcar, Corluka and of course Defoe). If Harry genuinely doesn't realise they have talent, then I'm glad he's not England manager, as we would have end up playing people like Barry and Downing over others. Mind you, Hodgson probably will as well, so not that it would make much difference. Defoe could be England's saviour, so not to take him is just pure stupidity.
All derbies are important. That much is clear. Whether it be Arsenal vs Chelsea, Man Utd vs Liverpool, Inter vs AC Milan and especially Barcelona vs Real Madrid, they are all at the pinnacle of the footballing calendar. However on the 30th of April, a different type of derby will take place. One that will not only put the rivalry into play but also the fate of the entire championship. If Man City win, then try will have won it, if Man Utd win they will have won it. It's as simple as that, and it is very rare for the season to bring up such a situation.
You could call it the final of the Premier League it's that important. It's one of those games you'll be able to look back on and say that exactly where the title was won, as both teams were neck and neck coming into it. While you could argue that on form alone, Man City deserve to win (let's face it, Man Utd have played terribly at times yet they're still somehow in this position), all that really matters in football are the points on the board, and Man Utd, you can't deny it, have done what they always do and delivered in that area.
Moving on to my predictions for the game, it's and extremely tough one to call, as this derby always is. While City thrashed United first time round, this is a very different set of circumstances. As much I am hoping for City to win, my brain tells me to go with United. They have more experience at this stage of the season, and Ferguson will simply not let a slip up happen. Also if they draw, United will probably win the title, so unless city win, you can essentially consider it Man Utd's 20th league title.
Scott Parker captained England against Holland on Wednesday, and evcen though they lost, England did show some promising signs despite Capello's resignation. However could there be a better captain then Scott Parker available? The permanent captain's main requirement is to be a regaular in the team and to play, therefore, in almost every match, that's why choosing Steven Gerrard would not be practical at all, as he is injured a lot of the time.
Pearce's decision to appoint Parker captain against Holland was a reasonable one, but I still think that there are better candidates out there, even though he is a very good one.
Joe Hart is one of the very very few Englabnd players who is guaranteed to play whatever happens. There are no keepers who are challenging him and he and Rooney are almost the only dead certs in the starting lineup. He's now got some international experience under his belt, and what's more, England have a good record with keepers as captain, Peter Shilton being the main example. For me, he's comfortably the best candidate.
Wayne Rooney is England's talismanic player and would also be a good fit, as like Hart, he is always in the starting eleven. However one of his most famous attributes is the red mist that descends upon him sometimes, especially on big occasions, so this could be risky. Having said this, even at 26, he is one of England's most capped players.
Gareth Barry would for me not be a smart choice. I'm not his biggest fan anyway, and I think that he can occasionally find hismelf on the bench and is not the stalwart player that England need as captain. He was the leader at Aston Villa for a while, but at Man City he also finds himself on the bench quite often as the squad rotates, so he is not the rgualr presence that the team need.
So those are my thoughts. Essentially, HART FOR CAPTAIN!! Who do you think should be the next England captain? Do you think Stuart Pearce made the right decision to appoint Scott Parker as captain against Holland? Comment below.