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Post #496121  Posted: Sun Jun 17, 2018 8:06 pm 
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Congrats to the Swiss (somewhere Babu is smiling). Heroic defense, excellent tactically. Both sides had another goal in them, Brazil obviously the more but a thrilling game nonetheless. Brazil will be disappointed but they tried and so far look the favorites to me despite the result. Germany didn't impress me. Although I need to see Argentina play, I'm basing ruling them out on what I saw in the highlights.
Xhaka plays better for his national team than for us. I can only guess its that although his position seems the same, center mid, his duties are a little different with the Swiss team. He seems to lie deeper with them. A wee bit more. Anyway, I hope he can replicate it for us.

That Coutinho strike!! Pure unadulterated class and it wasn't luck either. That ball went exactly where he wanted it and it got there exactly how he wanted it.


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Post #496122  Posted: Sun Jun 17, 2018 11:17 pm 
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Bernard wrote:
TOP GUN wrote:
Jack Wilshere is about to Join palace apparently so there will be much change next year.

The Mirror says he'll leave but don't mention Palace as one of his destination options.

https://www.mirror.co.uk/sport/football ... 721052.amp

EDIT: Bugger. The replied to post isn't in yellow. Rog, after the problems I've had in getting back on the forum, my vote is to leave things as they are. It didn't used to happen every time I posted a reply.

https://www.mirror.co.uk/sport/football ... k-12729369

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Post #496123  Posted: Mon Jun 18, 2018 1:39 am 
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Could Lichtsteiner be appointed as our Captain in the new season? He looks the part. I like his energy for the Swiss team, which I believe he will offer the same to Arsenal.

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Post #496124  Posted: Mon Jun 18, 2018 2:52 am 
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I am tipping England to have a very good WC and I would not be surprised if they progressed a long way. I think Southgate has built a team who will fight for each other.

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Post #496125  Posted: Mon Jun 18, 2018 6:35 am 
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gooner7 wrote:
Could Lichtsteiner be appointed as our Captain in the new season? He looks the part. I like his energy for the Swiss team, which I believe he will offer the same to Arsenal.

Very unlikely, I'd have thought. He won't be a regular starter anyway. He was signed as Bellerin's back up.


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Post #496126  Posted: Mon Jun 18, 2018 6:40 am 
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Gaz from Oz wrote:
I am tipping England to have a very good WC and I would not be surprised if they progressed a long way. I think Southgate has built a team who will fight for each other.

It's not impossible, they have a good team and Kane could be an x factor. Very weak midfield on paper though. Long gone are the days when they had the likes of Gerrard, Lampard, Scholes and Beckham in the side.


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Post #496127  Posted: Mon Jun 18, 2018 6:41 am 
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Bernard wrote:
gooner7 wrote:
Could Lichtsteiner be appointed as our Captain in the new season? He looks the part. I like his energy for the Swiss team, which I believe he will offer the same to Arsenal.

Very unlikely, I'd have thought. He won't be a regular starter anyway. He was signed as Bellerin's back up.

I know this is a really unique idea but why don't we appoint a captain who is likely to play most of the season. Until we know if there are other signings it is not clear who I would want. If we signed no one else then it may be Monreal or Ramsay but if Lichsteiner becomes a regular on the park then him.

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Post #496128  Posted: Mon Jun 18, 2018 6:49 am 
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I think people who expect Lichtsteiner to get significant playing time this season are seriously underestimating Bellerin. One of the most talented young full backs in Europe, if we get some semblance of a functioning team together he's one of the players I expect to benefit most from it.


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Post #496129  Posted: Mon Jun 18, 2018 9:19 am 
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For all Aussies because of the total f up by Optus in providing streaming of the WC SBS has all matches live tonight and probably will have some tomorrow night as well.

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Post #496130  Posted: Mon Jun 18, 2018 6:52 pm 
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Bernard wrote:
gooner7 wrote:
Could Lichtsteiner be appointed as our Captain in the new season? He looks the part. I like his energy for the Swiss team, which I believe he will offer the same to Arsenal.

Very unlikely, I'd have thought. He won't be a regular starter anyway. He was signed as Bellerin's back up.


Funny that Bellerin wasn't in my thinking. I already forgot he is still here. Hope his game improves under Emery and with a changed Arsenal game.

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Post #496131  Posted: Mon Jun 18, 2018 6:53 pm 
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Bernard wrote:
gooner7 wrote:
Could Lichtsteiner be appointed as our Captain in the new season? He looks the part. I like his energy for the Swiss team, which I believe he will offer the same to Arsenal.

Very unlikely, I'd have thought. He won't be a regular starter anyway. He was signed as Bellerin's back up.


Funny that Bellerin wasn't in my thinking. I already forgot he is still here. Hope his game improves under Emery and with a changed Arsenal game.

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Post #496132  Posted: Mon Jun 18, 2018 6:58 pm 
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England should still win it. They just need to be more composed when taking shots in the penalty area. It was surprising how they fluffed easy chances right where the entire goal post is in front of them. Walker was dumb, putting his hand out like that.

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Post #496133  Posted: Mon Jun 18, 2018 7:22 pm 
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gooner7 wrote:
England should still win it. They just need to be more composed when taking shots in the penalty area. It was surprising how they fluffed easy chances right where the entire goal post is in front of them. Walker was dumb, putting his hand out like that.

They are huffing and puffing a bit, and lack a real quality playmaker in the middle of the park. Set piece looking the most likely route to a winner.


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Post #496134  Posted: Mon Jun 18, 2018 7:52 pm 
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And Kane wins it from a corner. England have looked pretty uninspiring though.


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Post #496135  Posted: Mon Jun 18, 2018 8:09 pm 
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For the first time in ages, England actually looked the part and played like they do in the league. Tunisia impressed me actually, they are fairly well organized. However, England deserved the victory and I thought the penalty wasn't a pk but with these international judges, they see any residual contact and they call it. Its the one thing the younger players especially defenders in their own box need to be made aware of and I assume have gotten the message.


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Post #496136  Posted: Mon Jun 18, 2018 8:17 pm 
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England deserved it. The annoying thing was how weak the ref was. I think he fell for or wasn’t strong enormously he on every act of gamesmanship. Not giving the penalties from either himself or VAR for the wrestling of Kane (which was as blatant as anything I’ve seen for a while) was a particular low.

‘Weaker’ teams have shown that you don’t need to resort to those tactics to upset the bigger boys, all of that nonsense needs to be stamped out of football. It frustrates the hell out of me, players constantly chipping away pushing and breaking the rules to gain every advantage they can because the refs aren’t strong enough to clamp down on it


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Post #496137  Posted: Mon Jun 18, 2018 9:02 pm 
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That midfield was crying out for a bit of craft. Someone who can take a ball and move forward. Someone who can spot a truly penetrating pass rather than a 40m quarterback job to the wing. Someone who can drop a shoulder and beat a man.

Instead of the lump Henderson, that midfield needed Wilshere.


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Post #496138  Posted: Mon Jun 18, 2018 9:13 pm 
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Wolves have signed Rio Patricio the sporting and Portugal gk after he bought himself out of his sporting contract. There are a few sporting players doing this, arsenal meant to be looking at Gelson Martins he winger. Wouldn’t be a free transfer because the buying clubs usually give a hefty signing on fee to the player which is the same amount as he bought his contract out for.

Could be an interesting precedent going forward. Player on £200k per week with 2 years left on a deal wants out, club want £60m he can buy himself out for £20m. Maybe I’ve misunderstood it, let me know if you think it works differently


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Post #496139  Posted: Tue Jun 19, 2018 1:28 am 
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Cesc thanks Dein and says the club was never the same after he left. I agree but it was Dein's own fault. The current issues with ownership are primarily his fault. He brought in both Kroenke and Usmanov.

http://www.espn.com/soccer/arsenal/stor ... c-fabregas


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Post #496140  Posted: Tue Jun 19, 2018 7:43 am 
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DHD wrote:
That midfield was crying out for a bit of craft. Someone who can take a ball and move forward. Someone who can spot a truly penetrating pass rather than a 40m quarterback job to the wing. Someone who can drop a shoulder and beat a man.

Instead of the lump Henderson, that midfield needed Wilshere.


Indeed :laughing7: Henderson should have realised that getting the ball to the wings was futile if the next move was to pass it to a defender.

But I thought the real problem was all the fancy-dan Man City, United and Spuds players further forward, who, with the exception of the oddly orange-browed Kane, seemingly couldn't hit a barn door with a banjo, and tended to go into hiding after the first half hour.

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Post #496141  Posted: Tue Jun 19, 2018 7:48 am 
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DHD wrote:
That midfield was crying out for a bit of craft. Someone who can take a ball and move forward. Someone who can spot a truly penetrating pass rather than a 40m quarterback job to the wing. Someone who can drop a shoulder and beat a man.

Instead of the lump Henderson, that midfield needed Wilshere.



Yep, unfortunately no one with and real stature in the middle - we might bumble our way to the quarters. If Henderson is going to knock them long balls over put Vardy on not the fancy dan Sterling...

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Post #496142  Posted: Tue Jun 19, 2018 8:01 am 
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Abu wrote:
DHD wrote:
That midfield was crying out for a bit of craft. Someone who can take a ball and move forward. Someone who can spot a truly penetrating pass rather than a 40m quarterback job to the wing. Someone who can drop a shoulder and beat a man.

Instead of the lump Henderson, that midfield needed Wilshere.



Yep, unfortunately no one with and real stature in the middle - we might bumble our way to the quarters. If Henderson is going to knock them long balls over put Vardy on not the fancy dan Sterling...


Totally disagree. People talk about 40m quarterback balls as if they are easy or somehow vulgar but never seem to mind them done by a Gullit or a Veron. Thought Henderson had a good game and given that most of our many chances came from using width to get through the Tunisian defence it was right to try and get it out there and the LAST thing I wanted to see was the largely unwanted Jack Wilshere working his way industriously through the middle before falling over/diving/grimacing in agony as he twisted his ankle.

Overall we played better than Brazil did in their game (hugely overrated side including the tiresome Neymar) and while we tired in the second half it was great to see a team managed by a thoughtful and likeable guy who at least had given some thought to tactics - you lot are like the bloody English who moan and bitch when we get a bit of sun that it's too hot.

Enjoyable game, my daughter's first World Cup game and had the ultimate football joy of an injury time goal for her utter incredulous delight.


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Post #496143  Posted: Tue Jun 19, 2018 8:05 am 
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And yeah we missed chances but for anybody who has watched England in any kind of championship since Italia 90 the fact that we created any at all in our first game was a breath of fresh air.


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Post #496144  Posted: Tue Jun 19, 2018 8:07 am 
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Alli should have come off way earlier though.


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Post #496145  Posted: Tue Jun 19, 2018 8:13 am 
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Daz wrote:
And yeah we missed chances but for anybody who has watched England in any kind of championship since Italia 90 the fact that we created any at all in our first game was a breath of fresh air.


I thought England played as good a style of football in the first half as I have seen this world cup. Quick incisive and good to watch. It's only the first set of games but they have little to fear from the so called favourites. The only thing I would say is Southgate's inexperience may count against him. The team came out flat in the 2nd half after the half time team talk.

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Post #496146  Posted: Tue Jun 19, 2018 8:20 am 
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Gunfire wrote:
Daz wrote:
And yeah we missed chances but for anybody who has watched England in any kind of championship since Italia 90 the fact that we created any at all in our first game was a breath of fresh air.


I thought England played as good a style of football in the first half as I have seen this world cup. Quick incisive and good to watch. It's only the first set of games but they have little to fear from the so called favourites. The only thing I would say is Southgate's inexperience may count against him. The team came out flat in the 2nd half after the half time team talk.


I think we could and should easily have buried the game by H-T. And of course there was some really poor finishing especially from Lingard. But that worries me a lot less than if it had been one of those awful games that we usually played against you lot! I also think they deserve credit for keeping going and battling to the last minute. People say we lacked a player of class but Kane's header was actually incredibly skilful.

Nothing to be ashamed of in that performance - all the better teams have huffed and puffed a bit.


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Post #496147  Posted: Tue Jun 19, 2018 9:29 am 
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Gunfire wrote:
Daz wrote:
And yeah we missed chances but for anybody who has watched England in any kind of championship since Italia 90 the fact that we created any at all in our first game was a breath of fresh air.


I thought England played as good a style of football in the first half as I have seen this world cup. Quick incisive and good to watch. It's only the first set of games but they have little to fear from the so called favourites. The only thing I would say is Southgate's inexperience may count against him. The team came out flat in the 2nd half after the half time team talk.

I'd agree that they were scintillating in the first 20 minutes or so, albeit but a bit lacking on the final ball and finishing. If they had got to 2-0 it might have been a rout.

Panama didn't show much against Belgium (who also huffed and puffed at times) so England should advance fairly easily. What will be interesting to see how the England midfield copes against the likes of Germany (notwithstanding how stodgy they were against Mexico) and Spain.

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Post #496148  Posted: Tue Jun 19, 2018 9:34 am 
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Just digging through some old photos. Came across this from the Reading game in 2007. Judith making a special visit. Lovely memory.


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Post #496149  Posted: Tue Jun 19, 2018 9:43 am 
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It wasn’t a bad performance last night but I do believe England are lacking craft in central midfield.

What I did like was Stones and particularly Maguire bringing the ball out and moving into and through the empty spaces in front of them. It’s what Henderson conspicuously doesn’t do. Standing in acres of space, he habitually plays a shortish ball backwards or sideways with the occasional long square ball out to his right - good skill to hit his man from 40m but it’s a continuity pass, not an incisive one.

I thought Lotus-Cheek improved us quite significantly. Like Jack, he can beat a man and that’s a precious quality in midfield.


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Post #496150  Posted: Tue Jun 19, 2018 9:48 am 
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long time gooner wrote:
Just digging through some old photos. Came across this from the Reading game in 2007. Judith making a special visit. Lovely memory.


Blimey - that’s Steve when he still had hair.


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Post #496151  Posted: Tue Jun 19, 2018 10:01 am 
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DHD wrote:
long time gooner wrote:
Just digging through some old photos. Came across this from the Reading game in 2007. Judith making a special visit. Lovely memory.


Blimey - that’s Steve when he still had hair.

It is indeed.

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Post #496152  Posted: Tue Jun 19, 2018 11:12 am 
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Agree about Loftus Cheek - he's a danger.

Still disagree about Henderson. It's not his job to go scooting forward beating players, we have plenty who could or should be able to do that. To have a composed player who can pick out the men who can create danger especially on our right flanks where Trippier was an endless nuisance to them was a big asset. I would much rather have had that than Wilshere who is so often what the Latinos call mucho ruido pocas nueces (lots of noise few nuts). Plus when Sterling etc tried to go through the middle - which they sometimes did - they often ran into walls of defenders and I would argue that Sterling is a much more skilful player than Wilshere.

The thing that we were missing last night was another player who could finish like Kane - Lingard was really wasteful. Also Rashford should have taken that shot rather than dummy it but in fairness I suspect he got a shout.


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Post #496153  Posted: Tue Jun 19, 2018 11:17 am 
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All in all though it was nice to go to bed thinking that was pretty decent and not full of that mixture of embarrassment and disgust that England so often produce. Plus, it is very refreshing to see a manager who is honest and personable and not some gurning mentalist like Hoddle, creepy automaton like Sven or predictable old codger like Hodgson.


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Post #496154  Posted: Tue Jun 19, 2018 11:35 am 
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Daz wrote:
People talk about 40m quarterback balls as if they are easy or somehow vulgar but never seem to mind them done by a Gullit or a Veron. Thought Henderson had a good game and given that most of our many chances came from using width to get through the Tunisian defence it was right to try and get it out there and the LAST thing I wanted to see was the largely unwanted Jack Wilshere working his way industriously through the middle before falling over/diving/grimacing in agony as he twisted his ankle.

The '40m quarterback balls' comment struck me as a really stuffy expression. I didn't watch the whole game, the only match I've watched from the kick off to the final whistle so far was Germany's. But from what I did see of it, I also thought Henderson played well. Had Wilshere played instead of him, my guess is England would have been worse.

I like Jack and would much rather him stay than go. But if the reports that he's leaving because Emery won't guarantee him a regular starting place are right, I'm not surprised the English clubs chasing him are allegedly the likes of Everton, West Ham, Souvhampton and Palace.


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Post #496155  Posted: Tue Jun 19, 2018 12:36 pm 
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England should've been up 4-0 at half time, and I don't think you could say the same about Argentina or Germany who looked a lot more desperate for ideas. Thought England looked fine, the only thing I would question is why play Walker instead of a central defender and why start Lingard who is bad at football.


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Post #496156  Posted: Tue Jun 19, 2018 1:55 pm 
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I thought England played quite well first half, not so much second half, but any judgement of the display has to be tempered by the fact that Tunisia were absolutely diobolical.

Historically African sides have been weak tactically and defensively but blessed with a sprinkling of strong, athletic, pacy, skilful players who can cause any nation problems. Tunisia were the complete opposite, a bunch of journeyman footballers who were well organised and had a gameplan but lacked any kind of pace or panache.

We gifted them a goal and should have had four or five ourselves. In the end we made quite hard work of very limited opponents.

That said, no team has really impressed thus far and generally the minnows have given the so called "big boys" a testing time to the extent that several games could easily have gone either way.

At the moment this world cup looks wide open. The germans could go out in the group stage if they don't buck their ideas up. France and Belgium are typically looking less than the sum of their parts and Spain whilst being the best footballing side in the competition do have defensive issues and could be undone by counter-attacking sides.

Brazil are the Neymar show which detracts from the fact that they have some really good players (Countinho, Willian, Firmino, Jesus etc) and Argentina are basically expecting Messi to drag them to the final (a la Maradona) despite having plenty of other good players themselves.

A lot could depend on who finishes where in the groups and it's possible one side of the draw could end up being very strong and the other very weak. If I had to put money on a winner I'd go for Spain but there are five or six sides who given a bit of luck with decisions and the way the draw pans out could go a long way.


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Post #496157  Posted: Tue Jun 19, 2018 2:08 pm 
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socrates wrote:
I thought England played quite well first half, not so much second half, but any judgement of the display has to be tempered by the fact that Tunisia were absolutely diobolical.

Historically African sides have been weak tactically and defensively but blessed with a sprinkling of strong, athletic, pacy, skilful players who can cause any nation problems. Tunisia were the complete opposite, a bunch of journeyman footballers who were well organised and had a gameplan but lacked any kind of pace or panache.

We gifted them a goal and should have had four or five ourselves. In the end we made quite hard work of very limited opponents.

That said, no team has really impressed thus far and generally the minnows have given the so called "big boys" a testing time to the extent that several games could easily have gone either way.

At the moment this world cup looks wide open. The germans could go out in the group stage if they don't buck their ideas up. France and Belgium are typically looking less than the sum of their parts and Spain whilst being the best footballing side in the competition do have defensive issues and could be undone by counter-attacking sides.

Brazil are the Neymar show which detracts from the fact that they have some really good players (Countinho, Willian, Firmino, Jesus etc) and Argentina are basically expecting Messi to drag them to the final (a la Maradona) despite having plenty of other good players themselves.

A lot could depend on who finishes where in the groups and it's possible one side of the draw could end up being very strong and the other very weak. If I had to put money on a winner I'd go for Spain but there are five or six sides who given a bit of luck with decisions and the way the draw pans out could go a long way.

African football has traditionally been about sub-Saharan flair against North African discipline. There have been signs that the likes of Algeria, Morrocco, and Egypt might be evolving a more creative style. After all, European teams are bristling with talented players of North African descent. But its been mighty disappointing for Africa so far.

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Post #496158  Posted: Tue Jun 19, 2018 2:11 pm 
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Although there's an argument Tunisia were essentially France B.


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Post #496159  Posted: Tue Jun 19, 2018 3:01 pm 
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AmericanGooner wrote:
Saudia Arabia has never been world beaters internationally. They get in by playing smaller mid east countries with no talent. Saudi Arabia also has a population of African descent which adds some athelticsim to their squad the other mid east countries don't have. Getting past Oman, Kuwait, UAE, Baharain isn't much of a problem. Iran and to some extent Iraq can pose problems but they don't have to do much to get there.

Throw in playing the host country with the eyes of the world on you and its a recipe for a disastrous start.

I often wonder if any middle eastern country would boycott a match if Israel got in and they have to play each other?

Struggling with this one. Are you suggesting that there is a lack of footballing talent in the Arab world?

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Post #496160  Posted: Tue Jun 19, 2018 4:16 pm 
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Anyone watching the cricket?

Brutal.


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