In this week’s EPL Talk Podcast, I warned listeners that Croatia would love nothing more than to visit Wembley and steal a win putting their country on the back pages of sportspages worldwide and making manager Slaven Bilic look like a mastermind (and a future Premier League manager). Well, they did it by beating England 3-2 in an unbelievable second half knocking England out of qualifying for Euro 2008.
Just days earlier on the BBC Sportsweek radio programme, people like Peter Taylor, Ray Clemence, Peter Shilton and John Barnes were way over their top in the praise and outlook for the England team. All of them predicted an England victory. So too did the pundits on BBC TV today including even Alan Hansen.
At this point, McClaren has to be sacked and the FA needs to think long and hard about how to fix the system which is definitely broken. Ironically it was goalkeeper Scott Carson who contributed to England’s downfall tonight, but instead of criticizing England too much, praise has to be heaped on Croatia for a strong performance on a difficult pitch.
The question is: Who should the next England manager be? Marcelo Lippi? Martin O’Neill? Slaven Bilic? Jose Mourinho? What do you think should get it?