Connect in the back of the net

Maybe England are just not good enough!

A contentious topic, but one that cannot go unnoticed given England’s perennial disappointment at major tournaments.

The Three Lions were once again eliminated from the European Championship, but this time round by Iceland – a small country with a big heart.

This is not the first time England have underperformed however, as they have failed to win a knockout match since triumph against Ecuador in the 2006 World Cup.

In fact, the only international trophy England boasts of is the 1966 World Cup, which was held on their own home soil.

Apart from that, the team has nothing to show for their much hyped squad.

As statistics dictate, England have only won six knockout matches at major tournaments since their 1966 triumph, a half a century ago.

 

This therefore begs the question, are England really as good as they make us believe?

The English game is just one that cannot be defined clearly.

Though the nation has boasted of top-drawer footballers over the years, their golden generation has passed without winning any silverware: which is a massive disappointment to fans and players alike.

The Premier league in itself, is the richest and most watched league in the world, yet this is not translated to the English game going by their dismal performance on the international front.

Maybe then it is time for the media and fans to stop demanding too much from the team. This is simply because they might not be as good as they are portrayed.

The players that were tipped to shine in EURO 2016 failed ignominiously, with Harry Kane topping the list. Having had a superb goalscoring season, it is disheartening that his threat was not felt in the tournament.

In addition, playing for big clubs, with foreign, world-class players around them, some English players have been called up to the national team, only for them to fall short of the mark.

It is worth noting that apart from Wayne Rooney, the rest of the team was sub-par…more average than the most average England team in history.

But then again, what is Rooney’s role for the national team?

 

The team selection

Likewise, more questions than answers can be raised from the team’s selection.

Why would Roy Hodgson prefer both Jack Wilshere and Henderson to Danny Drinkwater-a Premier League winner with Leicester City? Why carry all five strikers? Why on God’s green earth was Harry Kane taking corners? Which formation would accommodate the likes of Vardy and Kane?

These and more tend to point out to a dysfunctional technical side reflecting by the team’s inability to jell, not to mention the preference of ‘big names’ to average yet efficient ones.

 

Back to the drawing board

All in all, the team could have performed much better than they did.

They could have at least won the group which could have presented a better chance of advancing to the quarter-finals or even semis.

For now though, it’s back to the drawing-board for the FA, and the incoming team coach to do an impossible task of living up to the demands of a nation.

 

Written by Brian Humphrey

Follow Brian on Twitter @brihum

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