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England vs France, Euro 2012: Open Thread

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Every two years, the question comes up whether England is a good football team or not. It’s ridiculous really, but England always has to prove themselves, not only to the press and soccer fans abroad, but even to the England supporters in their home country too.

Today, England faces a stern test against a French side that has been lauded by the soccer aficionados and British press. It’s a team that, on paper, should trounce England.

But we all know that soccer matches are more complicated than that, or are they?

England team: Hart, Johnson, Terry, Lescott, Cole, Milner, Gerrard, Parker, Oxlade-Chamberlain, Young, Welbeck

France team: Lloris, Debuchy, Rami, Mexes, Evra, Nasri, Cabaye Diarra, Malouda, Ribery, Benzema.

Join us today before, during and after England’s first match of Euro 2012. Post your rants, raves, observations and questions in the comments section below.

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96 Comments

96 Comments

  1. Smokey Bacon

    June 11, 2012 at 7:53 pm

    Very encouraging by England. It was a thing of beauty to see two lines of 4 frustrate a good French team. Tactically Hodgson was spot on and its starting to look like the FA was onto something when they ignored Redknapp who is a right pain in the a*se. We also had our moments going forward and are more of a goal threat than the stats suggest. But the best thing about England today is they finally look like a team prepared to play for one another. We were every bit as good as Germany and Italy today yet when they play defensively its some sort of masterclass. Well haters, England are going to be tough to beat in this tournament so get used to it.

    • Guy

      June 11, 2012 at 9:53 pm

      I am all for England, but today’s performance did not make me feel confident. I’m hoping Roy has a “Plan B” prepared, because if he doesn’t it is going to be a short tournament for England.

  2. Evan

    June 11, 2012 at 7:42 pm

    Man City 2-0 England and France

  3. Dust

    June 11, 2012 at 5:18 pm

    New Siri for iPhone does the EPL now, so cool.

    • Guy

      June 11, 2012 at 9:47 pm

      What, does it give you an update in an English accent? 😉

  4. Paul

    June 11, 2012 at 2:59 pm

    I have seen some posters saying Welbeck was poor but when you actually look at the game, I’d say he did very well. First lets consider Roy’s instructions : Keep the shape! That is why you don’t see Welbeck press like he does for United.
    Second, Welbeck got good tactical knowledge as he makes intelligent runs and always make himself available to receive the ball.
    if england had a good midfield and players of similar ilk, England would would scored more than the lone goal they scored today.
    So what do the fans want? Play Carroll who’s an inferior player to Welbeck and doesn’t require other players to have any tactical knowledge: Just hoof it up and cross it so Carroll could get on the end of it.
    Defoe? Another product of england philosophy about football: Take a shot at goal whenever, however, and often.

    ———-
    Sir Alex doesn’t do charities. If he look at his players during training and still decided to play Welbeck over chicarito(and berbatov) then that should tell you something.

  5. Guy

    June 11, 2012 at 2:41 pm

    Two more “sound” performances like this one and England will be traveling home. There had better be something else in the tank.

  6. Pete

    June 11, 2012 at 2:23 pm

    Well so much for everyone saying the french were going to wipe the floor with England, We’ll go and smash these other two teams and win the group. Get Rooney back and start dominating. We’ll probably win the whole thing now

  7. dust

    June 11, 2012 at 2:16 pm

    lalas is just taking swipes at England’s talent, he is such a moron, i think the players in the team can play better and more attacking, football just as they do for their clubs every week in the premiership. Lalas is wrong that england don’t have the talent, maybe not is this squad or with this manager but to just write us off as a football nation which is what he is doing, is just wrong. Weather you like it or not, you know harry would have had us playing much better football.

    when a german as dull as Ballack says you are dull that has to be bad!

  8. Pete

    June 11, 2012 at 2:10 pm

    I was happy with the play, we look pretty tight, made the french shoot mostly from distance and we caused the french a few problems ourselves going forward, Milner should have put that chance away, The French have good players going forward but I still think their defence is poor, you can’t really see them keeping clean sheets.

  9. Lyle

    June 11, 2012 at 2:01 pm

    English media and social media, plus the English fans on it, cost England a few goals every tournament. I’m sure it.

    England played well today. Could have won it with some good fortune or Milner shooting a little better.

    Good effort, good tactics… way to go England.

  10. dust

    June 11, 2012 at 1:58 pm

    i watched the ITV coverage at the same time and there was a Gerrard piece in the build up, where he says I would take a draw.. Hardly the attitude you want from a captain before the game has even kicked off. if after 809 mins it looks like a draw then fine but cmon!

    • Guy

      June 11, 2012 at 2:02 pm

      Damn long match there, dust. 😉

      • dust

        June 11, 2012 at 2:11 pm

        LOl exactly, thats how long you should wait before accepting anything less than a win…never!!

  11. Guy

    June 11, 2012 at 1:57 pm

    Click. I’m gone. Can’t take anymore of Lalas talking over Ballack.

    • Lyle

      June 11, 2012 at 2:02 pm

      Ballack doesn’t get out his words fast for TV, which is why Lalas butts in to end the dead air time.

      • Guy

        June 11, 2012 at 9:45 pm

        Dead air? He jumps right into the middle of Ballack’s commentary! Just rude.

  12. Alex Wolcott

    June 11, 2012 at 1:56 pm

    Oh shut up Lalas. I like how Ballack was just looking at him like he is an idiot. Which he is.

  13. Andrei

    June 11, 2012 at 1:56 pm

    From what I’ve seen England should comfortably qualify from this group. French were not impressive at all and they will struggle against Ukraine who are known for playing the same dreadful uninspiring football. England should be able to handle Sweden and do just enough to get a 1-0 win. Just don’t listen to Steve McMahon and treat Swedes as a lesser side.

    • Lyle

      June 11, 2012 at 2:04 pm

      England didn’t play “dreadful uninspiring football” today. They played well. Were sound. I like their style.

      • Andrei

        June 11, 2012 at 2:09 pm

        Btw meant both England and France 🙂 Ok I take that back. Ukraine is known for playing the same sound tactically astute football. Does it sound better?

  14. Alex Wolcott

    June 11, 2012 at 1:54 pm

    Pretty underwhelming and toothless effort by the Lions. But, there is the matter of Sweden and Ukraine not being much as far as sides go. Seems like the strategy became to squeeze a point out here with a view to outpointing Sweden and Ukraine.

    Would rather have Rooney back for Sweden than for Ukraine, but you take what you can get. I think Sweden was pretty decently up in terms of the FIFA rankings – not too far below France last I checked.

    • Lyle

      June 11, 2012 at 2:05 pm

      England had their chances today. They played well.

  15. dust

    June 11, 2012 at 1:54 pm

    see this is gonna drive me nuts. this is “england’s” style…no its isn’t, it doesn’t have to be, this is roy…aarrgghh

    • Lyle

      June 11, 2012 at 2:06 pm

      It’s Roy’s philosophy being implemented and look good today. England could have won. Yay!!!

  16. Pete

    June 11, 2012 at 1:54 pm

    I think neither team wanted to lose, we’ll probably see both of them play different in the next two games. Considering the ref gave absolutely nothing to England I think they can be happy enough, I know I would have taken 1-1 before the start

  17. Guy

    June 11, 2012 at 1:53 pm

    Maybe Alexi could pick up an injury and have to be replaced.

    • dust

      June 11, 2012 at 1:56 pm

      lol

  18. dust

    June 11, 2012 at 1:53 pm

    ballack slams england…and rightly so

    • Lyle

      June 11, 2012 at 2:08 pm

      Ballack is bonkers. Tiki-taka is just fashionable these days. Basically it’s more about style than results. If England win, who cares what the style was.

  19. dust

    June 11, 2012 at 1:52 pm

    Lalas is such a muppet

    • Cody

      June 11, 2012 at 1:59 pm

      Can’t believe Lalas feels the need to be a dick to every single commentator.
      Ballack should just slap him and tell him to go sit on an MLS bench.

  20. Guy

    June 11, 2012 at 1:52 pm

    Hope I don’t have to watch England play like that the rest of the way. blech.

  21. dust

    June 11, 2012 at 1:50 pm

    its been just horrible football since the france goal, its like they are deer in headlights.

  22. dust

    June 11, 2012 at 1:47 pm

    Defoe should have started

  23. Guy

    June 11, 2012 at 1:44 pm

    You can almost feel another French goal coming. Hope I’m wrong, but England look comatose.

  24. Pete

    June 11, 2012 at 1:41 pm

    French should giver their man of the match to the ref, he’s been a disgrace

    • John

      June 11, 2012 at 1:55 pm

      Are you done?

  25. dust

    June 11, 2012 at 1:34 pm

    oh well, at least there is a new macbook pro with retna screen!

  26. dust

    June 11, 2012 at 1:33 pm

    this ref is a joke

  27. Pete

    June 11, 2012 at 1:32 pm

    This ref is a joke

  28. jtm371

    June 11, 2012 at 1:31 pm

    OX,Wellbeck,and Young very disappointing i thought they could have got one.

    • Lyle

      June 11, 2012 at 2:09 pm

      They weren’t disappointing. Have no clue what you’re talking about.

  29. dust

    June 11, 2012 at 1:31 pm

    terry is such a laibility!

  30. dust

    June 11, 2012 at 1:29 pm

    cmon defoe, get the winner

  31. Stephen

    June 11, 2012 at 1:29 pm

    The air’s gone out of this one. Two tired sides out there.

  32. dust

    June 11, 2012 at 1:23 pm

    ox was wide open, Gerrard turned the other way, cmon man!

  33. dust

    June 11, 2012 at 1:21 pm

    Gerrard looks tired, sloppy, england again to negative, cmon!!!

  34. Paul

    June 11, 2012 at 1:19 pm

    actually the blond girl seem to be a better analyst than even Lalas who’s very generic(code word for “i don’t know anything”)

    • dust

      June 11, 2012 at 1:23 pm

      LOL true

  35. dust

    June 11, 2012 at 1:15 pm

    england miss kyle walker.

  36. Pete

    June 11, 2012 at 1:15 pm

    WTF, who is paying these officials? England have got nothing in this game

  37. Pete

    June 11, 2012 at 1:12 pm

    Lescott is a bit of liability at times

  38. Pete

    June 11, 2012 at 1:10 pm

    Showing these french how to pass it about

  39. Pete

    June 11, 2012 at 1:02 pm

    I’ve been commentating on my own on another thread, thought everyone else was a little quiet.

  40. dust

    June 11, 2012 at 12:57 pm

    England started well, Ashley young is not coming back for the ball, and playing behind welebck, ox is weak defensively exposing cole, terry is as predicted, slow.

  41. Ben

    June 11, 2012 at 12:56 pm

    Is this a French team? More of a North African team if you ask me, go England!

    • Andrei

      June 11, 2012 at 12:58 pm

      We do have a racism problem at Euro 2012 after all..

      • Ben

        June 11, 2012 at 1:01 pm

        This is nothing against North African player, just a fact, Germany doesn’t look really German also, Khedira, Ozil, Boeteng, Podolski,Gomez…

  42. MNUfan1991

    June 11, 2012 at 12:53 pm

    Captain Terry vs Paedo Benzema. I wish both teams could lose.

  43. dust

    June 11, 2012 at 12:48 pm

    the blonde is doing a great job, much better than Bob Ley

    • The Gaffer

      June 11, 2012 at 12:50 pm

      Her name is Rebecca Lowe.

      Cheers,
      The Gaffer

      • dust

        June 11, 2012 at 12:52 pm

        yeah, Rebeca, she sounds way more knowledgable and comfortable in-front of the camera.

  44. Paul

    June 11, 2012 at 12:48 pm

    england midfield way too deep. not applying enough pressure to france’s midfield and given how much quality they have there, it is not a good idea to do so.

    • Why?

      June 11, 2012 at 1:56 pm

      England were playing to there own strengths which are mostly defensive at the moment, so they will soak up the pressure and try to hit on the break. Not to bad of a plan with what they had against France who have a decent attack but there defense is a bit dodgy these days. Good point.

  45. dust

    June 11, 2012 at 12:48 pm

    the blone is doing a great job, much better than Bob Ley

  46. Andrei

    June 11, 2012 at 12:47 pm

    Zzzz… what … a … boring … game. Please, can we send these two teams home?

    • dust

      June 11, 2012 at 12:50 pm

      I thought winning is all that matters? no style needed. what happened to that argument, hey chelski fan?

      • Andrei

        June 11, 2012 at 12:51 pm

        Well you are confusing me with someone else if you think I’m a Chelsea supporter 🙂

        • dust

          June 11, 2012 at 12:54 pm

          only going off your posts and defense of the horrible football chelsea played in the semi and final of the ucl.

          • Andrei

            June 11, 2012 at 12:56 pm

            You have a reference with me defending their football? All said is that Chelsea matched well against Barcelona and nobody should write them off.

    • The Gaffer

      June 11, 2012 at 12:50 pm

      The teams are there to win matches, not to entertain the viewing audience.

      Cheers,
      The Gaffer

      • Andrei

        June 11, 2012 at 12:55 pm

        Well in previous games teams managed to do both. And the draw between Spain and Italy was very entertaining and had more quality. I hope the teams will pick up the second half. I don’t want to see another 45 mins of pedestrian football.

        • Cody

          June 11, 2012 at 1:20 pm

          you can always change the channel.

  47. Guy

    June 11, 2012 at 12:46 pm

    Not liking the shape of things right now. England way too tentative.

  48. Alex Wolcott

    June 11, 2012 at 12:40 pm

    Oh okay, if England HAD to give up the equalizer I guess it’s okay if Nasri gets it 🙂

  49. Alex Wolcott

    June 11, 2012 at 12:38 pm

    Lescott on the board and Joe Hart doing some fantastic work in the 35th. I have to say I like the particulars of this match at the moment.

  50. dust

    June 11, 2012 at 12:37 pm

    great save, i don’t think Dempsey’s goal would have happened if Hart was in goal.

  51. Cody

    June 11, 2012 at 12:31 pm

    Gerrard tips his hand on the first kick that was blown dead, then kicks it in the same exact spot for the header. Beautiful.

  52. Guy

    June 11, 2012 at 12:30 pm

    YEAH, boys!!!

  53. dust

    June 11, 2012 at 12:30 pm

    Lescott!!! yyeessss!!

  54. Guy

    June 11, 2012 at 12:28 pm

    Why does Hart just boot the ball down the pitch???

  55. Stephen

    June 11, 2012 at 12:20 pm

    McManahan’s habit of commenting in the form of questions is annoying.

  56. dust

    June 11, 2012 at 12:18 pm

    Gerrard and Parker have both played piercing balls. I have to admit it, they are playing a more premier league style

  57. Cody

    June 11, 2012 at 12:17 pm

    How many English wingers would have made that shot look easy?

  58. dust

    June 11, 2012 at 12:16 pm

    damn it Milner!

  59. Guy

    June 11, 2012 at 12:16 pm

    Aaaargh!,

  60. dust

    June 11, 2012 at 12:15 pm

    OMG!!!

  61. Brn442

    June 11, 2012 at 12:06 pm

    Yeah, but isn’t it ironic to hear the English supporters “booing” the French national anthem. After all that hysteria about “racism” in the British press.

    • The Gaffer

      June 11, 2012 at 12:14 pm

      You can’t equate booing with racism. That’s ridiculous.

      Cheers,
      The Gaffer

      • Brn442

        June 11, 2012 at 12:24 pm

        Gaffer – I never did but it smacks of disrespect and chauvinism. Hardly – a good light from a country who’s press made a big, self-righteous stink about the potential bad behaviour of Eastern European fans.

        • The Gaffer

          June 11, 2012 at 12:46 pm

          I don’t like it, but people boo. The English fans are probably booing the anthem because they hate France. Nothing more, nothing less.

          Cheers,
          The Gaffer

          • Brn442

            June 11, 2012 at 12:57 pm

            “probably booing the anthem because they hate France. Nothing more”

            Lol Gaffer, ya think?? They aren’t booing their lovely kits.

  62. The Gaffer

    June 11, 2012 at 11:57 am

    Nice is to see the whole England team singing the national anthem for a change.

    Cheers,
    The Gaffer

    • dust

      June 11, 2012 at 11:58 am

      absolutely… another shocker….I really hope your right gaffer. I really hope i’m wrong…aahhhh come on!

  63. dust

    June 11, 2012 at 11:52 am

    ok, everything aside, low expectations, my wanting a different manager and squad selection, when it comes down to it, i don’t know any Englishman that doesn’t root for their country. COME ON ENGLAND!

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