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Saturday, 28 May 2016

The Boys Of 66, 50 years on.

2016 marks 50 years since Bobby Moore lifted the world cup in front of a packed Wembley crowd. Little did the people of England know it but the country wouldn't lift that trophy again for over half a century, perhaps substantially longer with no sign of us winning it in any of the upcoming World cups. I thought I'd take the time to look at what makes a world cup winning side and perhaps try to solve the mystery as to why we haven't won it since. Whether its down to poor team performances at key stages or Managers who weren't up to scratch, or a mixture of both and individuals letting down the team. It would be unfair to suggest any player to wear the England Shirt was unworthy of it, but perhaps those 1 cap players were to blame for a lack of silverware? too much experimentation? not enough experience?

So what makes a world cup winning team? The answer is in Modern football it centers around a fine balance. Looking at recent winners in Spain and Germany it is evident that strength in depth is a key quality for a World cup winning side. If you take a look at Germany's winning squad in 2014, the strength they had was incredible, opponents came out second in ability in almost every position. A solid goalkeeper in Manuel Neuer, fantastic defenders in Mats Hummels and Bayern Munich's Jerome Boateng. Young Talented Midfielders in Mario Gotze and Mesut Ozil and strong attacking force from World Cups lead goal scorer Miroslav Klose and From the talented Thomas Muller who scored 5 goals in 2014s tournament. This strength combined with an incredible manager in Joachim Low shows just why Germany lifted the trophy that year, and in the current England squad their just aren't that many talented strong characters needed to build an elite force like this. Also its worth noting that 7 of Germany's starting XI played for Bayern Munich, and therefore knew each others game very well, and with the influence of foreign players on the premier league and the talent they bring, England are moving away from this sort of national team and are edging more towards one of different strengths.

Spain in 2010 showed just what being part of a team was all about wit their successful squad, quick passing between players in a small space until an opening emerges to be taken advantage of won Vincente Del Bosques side another star for their badge in South Africa. Something also that isn't really common of the English national side.

Traditionally England follow a strategy of power through the midfield, a back four that you wouldn't want to be confronted with on a late night walk, and two dominant strikers, one using strength and aggression to throw the opposition whilst the other particularly quicker and more agile and able to latch onto through passes. Real mavericks wore their shirt with pride. None more noteably than the likes of Terry Butcher in defence, Paul Gascoigne on the wing or upfront with Match of the day front man Gary Lineker. but as the game has changed so too has the type of player that the national team attracts. With more of a focus now on pace on the wing in players like Theo Walcott, and more complete strikers like Daniel Sturridge. Is this new tactic working? what more can be done?

The manager- Roy Hodgson hasn't been the most successful of managers but he has been backed by the board to do the job so surely we must stick behind him? England were unbeaten in qualifying for Euro 2016, and despite opponents not being all that challenging surely that unbeaten run must count for something? however, lack of achievement in this tournament could lead to Roy's sacking, such is the story with international management! the manager is pivotal to a teams successes, and England are no exception to this, we know Our players aren't the best in the world, so they need support from their coach, and if that isn't there things need to change.

Overall, Modern football has changed, The England boys are trying their best but with such incredible talent in opposition teams, its going to be tough to compete. However that is not to undermine some performances of England players over the years who have given fans incredible experiences, for example Michael Owens goal against Argentina, Gascoignes turn and Volley against Scotland, and of course David Beckham's free kick against Greece. I'm sure England will continue to excite fans whether they win games or not. Competition is tough, but hopefully so are the England players ready to take on the challenge, and perhaps some success will come our way! who knows!

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