I watched the friendlies on Wednesday just like everybody else. I split my time between the US’s drubbing of Poland, England/France and, a bit later, Italy/Spain. All were interesting affairs as far as friendlies are concerned. For me, they’re only worth the first half. When the managers begin to experiment, it’s over as entertainment–if you want to know how to change a game, make six simultaneous substitutions! There designed to be learning experiences, anyway. I understand that so I can’t fault the manager if he screws up a perfectly good game in the name of future greatness.
In the wake of the friendlies, the biggest talking point seems to be surrounding the English disappointment at there 1-0 loss to France. OK, I understand England and France don’t exactly have a history of hand holding and pattycake and don’t like to lose to one another, but let’s not overreact. It was only a penalty kick. It wasn’t like they got beat 3-0 (like we beat Poland… did I already mention that?). Furthermore, this is only Capello’s second game in charge of England. The man’s got to familiarise himself with the players. He’s got to figure out what tactics to use. He’s got to find a good leader–his leader–and to do this and win every single game is asking a bit much. To not take the time with experimentation during a FRIENDLY is suicide.
So, what’s my point? I’m just asking all the McNulty’s out there to please SHUT UP and quit your moaning. It’s not helping your beloved England improve, that’s for sure. Anybody can sit around and find negative points in a friendly football match (even if you happen to win 3-0, away). What England need to do is remain positive and remind themselves that they only lost on a penalty and that they looked rather good in the first half, playing with 5 midfielders to boot. OK McNulty? Sit back, shut up, and let the man work.