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Posted (edited)
2 hours ago, HawkMan said:

I'm a fully paid up England supporter, always have been, but also a realist. It may seem negative but I really don't think England are as good as everyone seems to think.

In 2018 WC let's face it they were in the easier half of the draw, and stumbled against the first decent opposition in Croatia. 

In the Euros they did well, but did have home advantage,  IIRC except one game, beating a well passed their use by date Germany and lost to Italy who couldn't qualify for Qatar. In this year's WC I expect them to get out of an easyish group,  Ukraine if they qualify today likely to be the toughest opposition.

After that I fear an early last 16 exit.

Apparently England are second favourites with the bookies, that doesn't seem right, I would put Brazil, Argentina,  Germany, France and Spain all ahead of them.

BTW I have Premier sports and their presentation of RL is far superior to their Nations League coverage,  it's really cheap with minimal effort.

Agreed , I think we’re usually overhyped. I’m not a big Southgate fan tbh , imo he totally bombed the two huge games we were in , and we’re a bit ‘safe’ , and to me not as a great officianado , pretty boring in how we play .  I think in big games the middle of the park is key and we’re to defensive and lacking there 

Edited by DavidM
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2 hours ago, HawkMan said:

I'm a fully paid up England supporter, always have been, but also a realist. It may seem negative but I really don't think England are as good as everyone seems to think.

In 2018 WC let's face it they were in the easier half of the draw, and stumbled against the first decent opposition in Croatia. 

In the Euros they did well, but did have home advantage,  IIRC except one game, beating a well passed their use by date Germany and lost to Italy who couldn't qualify for Qatar. In this year's WC I expect them to get out of an easyish group,  Ukraine if they qualify today likely to be the toughest opposition.

After that I fear an early last 16 exit.

Apparently England are second favourites with the bookies, that doesn't seem right, I would put Brazil, Argentina,  Germany, France and Spain all ahead of them.

BTW I have Premier sports and their presentation of RL is far superior to their Nations League coverage,  it's really cheap with minimal effort.

I do tend to agree that England aren't as good as so many are saying.

Ultimately I think our success in the previous 3 tournaments (World Cup, Euros and Nations League) have come from being a team that is hard to beat. We are very solid from the back. It is an approach that I can certainly see the logic behind, it brought us closer to success consistently than any other England team ever and builds on the great attributes of victorious teams of the past such as your Italy's, Argentina's or Germany's.

I do feel that Southgate does err on the side of caution and go too far down that route sometimes though. Hungary yesterday was a classic example. It didn't need 5 at the back, and we should be able to be more positive with our selections against objectively weaker opposition.

Some would say that this suggests Southgate doesn't rate his defenders to play in a back 4 at the highest level...

Compounding all of this is a really poor sense of attacking fluidity. I can understand that this is the hardest thing to gel in a team, but when your system is reducing the number of attacking players, then every attacking move becomes more critical.

Thankfully I think we have moved on from not being able to hold onto the ball and pass etc. I do genuinely believe a lot of those England teams of the past 20 years were massively overhyped and exposed. Southgate has shown that he can build a resilient team that is hard to beat, but we now need to be looking to score goals and taking on games much more aggressively.

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5 hours ago, Tommygilf said:

Technically Hungary had a stadium ban hence the empty seats. Kids were given tickets as i understand it.

I like the Nations League. For England particularly I think it is perfect; for nearly all my lifetime we would stroll through qualification against Andorra etc. muddle our way out of a group stage and then look pretty poor against decent opponents in the Quarter finals where we would be knocked out. Finally we can now play top level competitive matches against top European nations without the pressure of a tournament knock out game.

It has replaced meaningless friendlies with matches against genuinely competitive national teams. I think it will be good for England to test where we are against top quality sides before a tournament.

Is there a prize at the end of these games TommyG, or does it give the winners any advantage for comps coming up ?. 

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25 minutes ago, Josef K said:

Is there a prize at the end of these games TommyG, or does it give the winners any advantage for comps coming up ?. 

There is a trophy and a semis/finals round. The first time, England were involved and it was in Portugal (Guimares and Porto). I believe there is a way that you get another chance at Qualification for the WC/Euros too.

You can get promoted and relegated from your respective group too so nations should all play "competitive" games

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Posted (edited)
23 minutes ago, Tommygilf said:

There is a trophy and a semis/finals round. The first time, England were involved and it was in Portugal (Guimares and Porto). I believe there is a way that you get another chance at Qualification for the WC/Euros too.

You can get promoted and relegated from your respective group too so nations should all play "competitive" games

It's all very simple really....I don't think!

Finals, promotion and relegation.

In the top league, League A, the winners of the four groups go on to play in the Nations League Finals, with two semi-finals, one third and fourth place decider, and one final to decide which team becomes the UEFA Nations League champion.

Teams can also be promoted and relegated to a higher or lower league. Starting in 2020–21, each group winner in Leagues B, C, and D is automatically promoted to the next higher league for the next tournament. Each team placing last in its group in the Leagues A and B is automatically relegated to the next lower league; as League C has four groups while League D has only two, the two League C teams that are to be relegated are determined by play-outs beginning in March of even-numbered years. Based on the Nations League overall ranking of the fourth-placed teams, the first-ranked team face the fourth-ranked team, and the second-ranked team face the third-ranked team. Two ties are played over two legs, with the higher-ranked team hosts the second leg. The two teams that score more goals on aggregate over the two legs remain in League C, while the losing teams are relegated to League D. If the aggregate score is level, extra time will be played (the away goals rule is not applied). If still tied after extra time, a penalty shoot-out will be used to decide the winner.

The away goals was originally to be used, but was abolished by the UEFA Executive Committee on 16 December 2021.

 

The UEFA Nations League is linked with the UEFA European Championship qualifying, providing teams another chance to qualify for the UEFA European Championship.

There were play-offs for each of Leagues A, B, C, and D in October and November 2020. Each group winner earned a spot in the semi-finals. If the group winner was already one of the 20 qualified teams, rankings were used to give the play-off spot to another team of that league. If fewer than four teams in the entire league remained unqualified, play-off spots for that league were given to teams of the next lower league. This determined the four remaining qualifying spots for the European Championship (out of 24 total).

 

The Nations League is linked with European qualification for the FIFA World Cup, although to a lesser degree than the UEFA European Championship qualifying play-offs. The first round of the World Cup qualification consists of ten groups. The winner of each group will directly qualify for the World Cup. Then, the second round (which follows a play-off format) will be contested by the ten group runners-up, plus the best two Nations League group winners (based on the Nations League overall ranking) that finished outside the top two of their qualifying group. The play-offs will be split into three play-off paths, played in two semi-finals (hosted by the six best-ranked runners-up of the qualifying group stage) and the final (with the home teams to be drawn), from which an additional three teams will also qualify.

Edited by HawkMan
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Good luck Grimsby!

Many years ago I used to interview Lennie Lawrence every Friday for local radio as a young radio sports reporter in East Yorks/North Lincs.

They were in the Championship (2nd Division) back then clinging on for dear life.

It would be nice to see them back up in the Football League.  

Got a softer spot for Scunthorpe Utd for similar reasons (Brian Laws their manager at the time) - I’ll be hoping they can bounce back straight away.

 

 

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45 minutes ago, HawkMan said:

It's all very simple really....I don't think!

Finals, promotion and relegation.

In the top league, League A, the winners of the four groups go on to play in the Nations League Finals, with two semi-finals, one third and fourth place decider, and one final to decide which team becomes the UEFA Nations League champion.

Teams can also be promoted and relegated to a higher or lower league. Starting in 2020–21, each group winner in Leagues B, C, and D is automatically promoted to the next higher league for the next tournament. Each team placing last in its group in the Leagues A and B is automatically relegated to the next lower league; as League C has four groups while League D has only two, the two League C teams that are to be relegated are determined by play-outs beginning in March of even-numbered years. Based on the Nations League overall ranking of the fourth-placed teams, the first-ranked team face the fourth-ranked team, and the second-ranked team face the third-ranked team. Two ties are played over two legs, with the higher-ranked team hosts the second leg. The two teams that score more goals on aggregate over the two legs remain in League C, while the losing teams are relegated to League D. If the aggregate score is level, extra time will be played (the away goals rule is not applied). If still tied after extra time, a penalty shoot-out will be used to decide the winner.

The away goals was originally to be used, but was abolished by the UEFA Executive Committee on 16 December 2021.

 

The UEFA Nations League is linked with the UEFA European Championship qualifying, providing teams another chance to qualify for the UEFA European Championship.

There were play-offs for each of Leagues A, B, C, and D in October and November 2020. Each group winner earned a spot in the semi-finals. If the group winner was already one of the 20 qualified teams, rankings were used to give the play-off spot to another team of that league. If fewer than four teams in the entire league remained unqualified, play-off spots for that league were given to teams of the next lower league. This determined the four remaining qualifying spots for the European Championship (out of 24 total).

 

The Nations League is linked with European qualification for the FIFA World Cup, although to a lesser degree than the UEFA European Championship qualifying play-offs. The first round of the World Cup qualification consists of ten groups. The winner of each group will directly qualify for the World Cup. Then, the second round (which follows a play-off format) will be contested by the ten group runners-up, plus the best two Nations League group winners (based on the Nations League overall ranking) that finished outside the top two of their qualifying group. The play-offs will be split into three play-off paths, played in two semi-finals (hosted by the six best-ranked runners-up of the qualifying group stage) and the final (with the home teams to be drawn), from which an additional three teams will also qualify.

Tbf, the league system is straightforward, only the relation to second chance qualification to the Euros or World Cup are a bit more complex.

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32 minutes ago, Gerrumonside ref said:

Good luck Grimsby!

Many years ago I used to interview Lennie Lawrence every Friday for local radio as a young radio sports reporter in East Yorks/North Lincs.

They were in the Championship (2nd Division) back then clinging on for dear life.

It would be nice to see them back up in the Football League.  

Got a softer spot for Scunthorpe Utd for similar reasons (Brian Laws their manager at the time) - I’ll be hoping they can bounce back straight away.

 

 

Scunthorpe are in a bad way aren’t they. Has Peter Swann resigned as chairman and now Lee Turnbull is now acting chairman. I think the best Scunny can hope for next season is middle of the table. 

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36 minutes ago, Gerrumonside ref said:

Good luck Grimsby!

Many years ago I used to interview Lennie Lawrence every Friday for local radio as a young radio sports reporter in East Yorks/North Lincs.

They were in the Championship (2nd Division) back then clinging on for dear life.

It would be nice to see them back up in the Football League.  

Got a softer spot for Scunthorpe Utd for similar reasons (Brian Laws their manager at the time) - I’ll be hoping they can bounce back straight away.

 

 

If i was at the final and i was behind the goals i would’ve had to have taken a pair of binoculars with me. Tickets prices were not cheap either for a tier 5 final. 

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12 minutes ago, Josef K said:

Scunthorpe are in a bad way aren’t they. Has Peter Swann resigned as chairman and now Lee Turnbull is now acting chairman. I think the best Scunny can hope for next season is middle of the table. 

I’ll have to take your word for it as I’m back in the north west and have lost track of them over time.

Have to say that the people at Glanford Park were easily the nicest I encountered in football in the late 90s.

That said I preferred dealing with any of the rugby league clubs as there was less of an ego issue surrounding the sport.

Players and coaches straight forward, helpful and down to earth.

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On 05/06/2022 at 19:10, Tommygilf said:

Very typical of England under Southgate yesterday. 5 at the back, possession dominant, but little in the way of attacking threat and creativity.

It seems again that England's chances at Qatar will be based on the defence giving nothing away, and hoping for chances up front to be taken. A back 5 plus Rice and Philips is overboard imo, and misses how a key benefit of Rice and/or Philips is that they can do the defensive work of a 3rd centre back whilst allowing another midfielder onto the pitch.

Under GS, England are more consistent and have been more successful. He has a good A Plan which usually works well against lesser teams. The problem is if the opponent nullifies that plan and the better sides often do so, nothing changes. The best coaches will change things during a match, he seems either unwilling or unable to do so. 

My blog: https://rugbyl.blogspot.co.nz/

It takes wisdom to know when a discussion has run its course.

It takes reasonableness to end that discussion. 

 

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1 minute ago, RayCee said:

Under GS, England are more consistent and have been more successful. He has a good A Plan which usually works well against lesser teams. The problem is if the opponent nullifies that plan and the better sides often do so, nothing changes. The best coaches will change things during a match, he seems either unwilling or unable to do so. 

Indeed, we have been good in tournaments because in essence we have been quite hard to score against. The flip side of that is that we have been incredibly one dimensional in attack. Without the attacking talent at our disposal, England would have fared far worse as we would have converted fewer of our few chances. 

I don't have anything against having a Plan A, and Plan B being do Plan A better (I watched Marcelo Bielsa's Leeds United for the past 4 years after all). I just think the attacking side of Plan A needs much more developed and drilled. I also fear that if we lose Harry Kane or his form collapses, which is entirely possible, our attack will be even more blunt.

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Posted (edited)
2 hours ago, Tommygilf said:

I don't have anything against having a Plan A, and Plan B being do Plan A better (I watched Marcelo Bielsa's Leeds United for the past 4 years after all). I just think the attacking side of Plan A needs much more developed and drilled. 

But surely that’s the point Tommy. When teams were nullifying Plan A, he didn’t change anything. Leeds were heading for relegation and I believe would have gone down but for the new coach.

The attack isn’t helped when the players are jaded after a long, tough EPL season.

Edited by RayCee

My blog: https://rugbyl.blogspot.co.nz/

It takes wisdom to know when a discussion has run its course.

It takes reasonableness to end that discussion. 

 

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2 hours ago, RayCee said:

Under GS, England are more consistent and have been more successful. He has a good A Plan which usually works well against lesser teams. The problem is if the opponent nullifies that plan and the better sides often do so, nothing changes. The best coaches will change things during a match, he seems either unwilling or unable to do so. 

They seem to have lost Plan A now. Quote form the BBC website regarding the game against Germany:

Rob Green, Former England goalkeeper on BBC Radio 5 Live

England have been treading water since Raheem Sterling has been injured, waiting for something to happen, looking at each other as if to ask what the game plan is.

My blog: https://rugbyl.blogspot.co.nz/

It takes wisdom to know when a discussion has run its course.

It takes reasonableness to end that discussion. 

 

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1 hour ago, RayCee said:

But surely that’s the point Tommy. When teams were nullifying Plan A, he didn’t change anything. Leeds were heading for relegation and I believe would have gone down but for the new coach.

The attack isn’t helped when the players are jaded after a long, tough EPL season.

I agree tbh, though I think that was more a fault of the small squad rather than the system per se. Our finishing unsurprisingly collapsed after our top goal scorer was injured for most of the year. And by its nature of attack being the best form of defence, it leant itself much more to the "do plan A better" attitude. Very much "you score 3 we'll score 4". 

The small squad was a fault of Bielsa's, but by no means just his. And in any case it had been what had allowed the club to get to the position it was in.

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The England Football side has just played three games (270 minutes) and not scored one goal from free play, just one penalty. The players look jaded, having just completed a season of 38 PL matches, two domestic cup competitions and for some players a European comp of some sort. International friendlies during the season and now they are expected to play internationals. I think RL expects too much from the players but this takes it to another level. 

One fan said of the last game that it was 90 minutes spent that he will never get back. It's too many games and when the players have given all they can, it simply ruins the spectacle. In this instance it really is a case of more is less. 

My blog: https://rugbyl.blogspot.co.nz/

It takes wisdom to know when a discussion has run its course.

It takes reasonableness to end that discussion. 

 

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7 hours ago, RayCee said:

The England Football side has just played three games (270 minutes) and not scored one goal from free play, just one penalty. The players look jaded, having just completed a season of 38 PL matches, two domestic cup competitions and for some players a European comp of some sort. International friendlies during the season and now they are expected to play internationals. I think RL expects too much from the players but this takes it to another level. 

One fan said of the last game that it was 90 minutes spent that he will never get back. It's too many games and when the players have given all they can, it simply ruins the spectacle. In this instance it really is a case of more is less. 

And England (and Wales) *still* have another game to go before the season ends.

Build a man a fire, and he'll be warm for a day. Set a man on fire, and he'll be warm for the rest of his life. (Terry Pratchett)

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32 minutes ago, DavidM said:

Not an expert but with the World Cup when it is , wouldn’t it have made sense to give them this summer as a break ?

An added covid complication hangover was that last season started later than it should have done. 

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3 hours ago, DavidM said:

Not an expert but with the World Cup when it is , wouldn’t it have made sense to give them this summer as a break ?

The Leagues will be suspended the world over in November and into the WC quite quickly,  so no time for pre WC warm up matches. So the Nations League games, 4 now and 2 in September will be invaluable for coaches. What UEFA should have done is tinkered with the format of the Nations League this time round and had groups of three teams instead of four, meaning 4 games not 6.

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I see Maurico Pochettino is leaving PSG. they won the league this year but nothing else. 

The French comp has traditionally been fairly even but over the last several years PSG has dominated proceedings. Allocating points for top results in various domestic comps has PSG pulling away from the rest as seen below, going back to the 1960-61 season. Green shading shows the leader with the most accumulative points. The last ten year are shown.

  Year Tot 22 21 20 19 18 17 16 15 14 13
 
1 Paris St-Germain 191 6 7 13 8 13 10 13 13 9 6
2 AS Monaco FC 129 2 4     4 7 2 2 3  
3 Olympique Marseille 128 3   3   1   2 1   3
4 Olympique Lyonnais 112   1   2 2 1 3 3 1 2
5 AS Saint-Étienne 101     2 1         1 3
6 FC Bordeaux 98                   4
7 FC Nantes 101 4                  
8 AJ Auxerre 41               2    
9 Lille Olympique SC 34   6 2 3     1   2  
10 RC Lens 27                    
11 RC Strasbourg 27       3            

My blog: https://rugbyl.blogspot.co.nz/

It takes wisdom to know when a discussion has run its course.

It takes reasonableness to end that discussion. 

 

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After an achingly boring contest, Australia become team 31 to qualify for the World Cup by beating Peru on penalties.

The final place will be decided when Costa Rica play New Zealand today.

I wouldn't hold out any hope for any more excitement but it is on BBC streaming.

Build a man a fire, and he'll be warm for a day. Set a man on fire, and he'll be warm for the rest of his life. (Terry Pratchett)

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11 hours ago, gingerjon said:

After an achingly boring contest, Australia become team 31 to qualify for the World Cup by beating Peru on penalties.

The final place will be decided when Costa Rica play New Zealand today.

I wouldn't hold out any hope for any more excitement but it is on BBC streaming.

I feel sorry for our oval ball fans down under as it be over bearing with the sleeping giants fans in Oz.....looking forward to Christmas.

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