against you in an international?
It pretty much put into perspective the so called toughest tie in England’s Euro 2012 qualifying group. It just highlights was a simple chance to qualify Fabio was handed and get everyone back up into a frenzy of belief.
But how piss poor were the Swiss? Yes we know their main plan of attack is not to but a flat back nine if there’s a slight opening someone try and get a little forward and nick a goal. Well it worked against Spain didn’t it. Hasn’t really worked that well at other times.
Fabio is almost getting things right by default, certainly not through his own decisions. Rooney, now looks like a weight has lifted with the allegations finally coming to light – was this the thing that was holding him back in South Africa the anticipation of scandal? – so the tabloids helped Fab there. And then injuries, first keeping Terry, Ferdinand and Lampard out and then seeing Walnutt being carried off.
Yes the winger hadn’t been as atrocious as previous games but was still completely overshadowed by the arrival of Adam Johnson. Where Walnutt can run quickly he has no control over the ball and very little end product, Johnson maybe a little slower in pace but makes up for it with everything else about his game. Yes it’s only been Bulgaria and Switzerland and the bits before the World Cup but he does look born to it at the international game, not something you can say about may England players. And with another goal under his belt, it can only help.
But it also just shows with Fabio, Johnson should have started, everyone knew it before hand and if they didn’t it was made blatantly obvious not long after he came on. Everyone of course except Fabio, who is given things with one hand but takes away with another – I know that barely makes sense – but given a decent enough partnership between Cahill and Jagielka decides to bring in Lescott for this game. A player deemed not even good enough for the bench in the previous game is brought in over a player who performed. If you are relegating Upson so far down the ladder what’s the point of bring in a deer in the headlights like-for-like replacement. Yes he didn’t have a howler but do you really want him in there for the near future? Cahill a few years younger a better fit for the future.
Thankfully Hart’s couple of errors didn’t lead to anything serious, no knock to the confidence and good to get these things out of the way. They certainly don’t put him into the James, Carson and Green category.
But then we’re talking about a manager who brought on Shaun Wright-Phillips. If he gets another look in after that performance then don’t get to hopeful folks. Chances are he will, after all it was about as bad the recent times he’s come on for England. What does Lennon have to do, well ‘Arry and the rest of us Lillywhites are hoping a lot with Defoe coming off again with an injury. Of course all the attention on Walnutt, Defoe just an afterthought with most media.
The best help Fabio needs now is injuries to the fullbacks, who were again the weak link, especially Glen Johnson. His ball for the opening goal showed why he is in the team, most of his play after that – one shot apart – showed why he shouldn’t be there at all. For a player with supposed pace he doesn’t have take his time getting back to help out. Oh and it would have helped if Gerrard had picked up a rightful booking, oh wow he’s enjoying being in the centre of the park, where he’s free to give the ball away with ease.
The big questions though will what is Fabio going to put out come the next round of games, Terry and Lampard will no doubt be fit, you never know with Ferdinand these days, and with Milner suspended due to a booking last night, will the usual suspects just line up in their spots in the starting XI?