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England will only realise their qualities during the first game in Russia 2018

Monday 9th October 2017
Over the years, England has become somewhat tedious to watch for many. We all complain how boring we play, yet get the results anyway. But when it comes to the big tournaments we usually don't do that well. Do we always expect more than we are capable of?

In the previous edition of the World Cup back in 2014, England did not suffice to requirements. In fact, they didn't even make it out of the group stage.  Placed in Group D, the Three Lions were up against Costa Rica, Italy and Uruguay. Not an easy group but the results were just unacceptable for the level that many people expected.

Losses to Italy and Uruguay pretty much confirmed their exit but the final game was the worst of all. A 0-0 draw with Costa Rica. England was being managed by Roy Hodgson at the time who had recently been in charge at Liverpool. This is the competition that will either make or break a career.
Players can play fantastic for their club in certain leagues. They can also play great in qualifiers, but the teams they are up against are usually weaker. It isn't until the actual final tournament people will see the true quality of certain teams. International sides get hyped up through the qualifying stages but can then flop on the big stage.

In the build-up to 2014, England had won their group with Ukraine, Montenegro, Poland and San Marino involved. Teams that won their qualifying groups and were knocked out in the group stages of the final tournament included Italy, Russia, Bosnia & Herzegovina, Spain and England. More than half of the European qualifying group winners were knocked out in the group stages of the final tournament in Brazil 2014!

People wonder why others moan about England getting the win. "It doesn't matter how poor they played because they got the three points". When you play against a team like Slovenia, England should be easing past them with the 'so-called' talent they have in their whole squad. We are talking about players who play top-level football week in, week out.
A last minute goal from Harry Kane might be all well and good but for the die-hard fans who can actually see the problems England already have, we pretty much worry for when they actually come up against the big guns. Brazil, Spain, Germany, France, Belgium, Uruguay. Just a few teams England would be concerned about if they ever come up against them in Russia.

This isn't a hate thread on England but just a wake-up call for fans who don't see what England aren't actually ready for. The style of play isn't urgent, even as we have already seen in qualifying.  When England aren't winning, there is no urgency at all. Our style is implemented from how the Premier League plays now. Playing out from the back and side to side.

There needs to be more forward play and to get the ball further up the pitch if England expects to even get out of any group in Russia next year. With last World Cup's edition, we just hope England don't fall victim at the first hurdle again.
Jamie Kynaston

For my sins, I'm a season ticket holder at Stoke City, I have been proud to watch them for over 20 years. I follow most of the UK leagues and the major European ones too, and I've been told that I talk way too much about football.


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