A few months back, reacting to Cappello’s departure, I triumphantly welcomed England’s new era. Under Harry, England could chop out the dead wood and take a new, young, exciting squad to the Euros – where they could play a new brand of stylish football, under light pressure and with limited expectation…
I could not have been more naive and wholeheartedly wrong.
In actuality we have hired a dull, average manager, who in turn has picked the tired, uninspiring ‘same old’ squad… same OLD squad.
‘The Ox’ apart, Roy has wheeled out the same faces.
Germany in 2006 (and 2010) drew out a blueprint that England should have followed – take a risk in youth. Experience is over-rated, and let’s be honest, we have absolutely no experience of how to succeed at a major tournament anyway. The only hope we had was to fill the squad with exciting young players, with nothing to prove and with the freedom to play – just like those young German sides.
So what would I have done?
I would have welcomed England’s new dawn. I would have hacked up the old squad and started with a blank piece of paper. Rooney, Ashley Cole and Gerrard would have made it – but around them I would have built a fresh new side.
I would have axed Downing, Terry, Defoe, Walcott, Lescott, Milner, Lampard and Glenn Johnson and given new, exciting “in form” players a chance. Jagielka should not only be in the squad, he should probably start. And Micah Richards is just the kind of strong, direct versatile player we need.
And where are Aaron Lennon and Adam Johnson? Their speed, skill and direct running have already proved effective at international level. Daniel Sturridge is dangerous from the bench, and even Matt Etherington and Danny Graham excite me more than the average Downings and Milners of this World. It’s a pity two of our most exciting prospects, Kyle Walker and Jack Wilshere, are injured, but even without them we could have tried something new.
We have some good strong players, and in Hart, Cole, Parker, Gerrard and Rooney (after 2 games) we would have a core around which in-form young players could have expressed themselves and excelled!
If Downing and Milner start the first game, I am switching off. I’m bored of Roy already, and although he has lots of (average) experience – as I said earlier, experience is overrated anyway…
“…You can’t win anything with kids!”