Was I the only one who thought it was very hard to watch last night’s England game against Italy, where it seemed that England were very much second best.
Alan Pardew – this is the man that can get Newcastle a trophy
We suppose that Roy Hodgson had little alternative with so many good players missing, to play the defensive type of game he had England play, and Wayne Rooney obviously was short of match practice, and we had some good players missing from the squad through injury.
And to be fair, everything in that sense worked a treat, because England got to the penalty shoot-out stage, and were leading 2-1 after the first two rounds, and if we had scored the next three penalties we would have won the game.
That’s not to say we deserved to win the game, because we didn’t, and Italy were by far the better side, but it wasn’t England’s fault that Italy kept missing some gilt edged chances.
When I was a young lad, things looked great for England and Newcastle, and before 1970 rolled around, England were the reigning World Champions, having smashed West Germany 4-2 in the final in 1966 after extra time, and of course Newcastle had won the Inter-Cities Fairs Cup in 1969.
So everything was looking good, and if somebody had told me then, that neither Newcastle nor England would win anything over the next 42 years, I would have asked them what they had been smoking.
Neville and Hodgson console Cole and Young after England’s exit
And to be fair to manager Roy Hodgson – he has done well since he took over in early May, and let’s face it, only England could get themselves into a situation where they were without a manager earlier this year, before a major Championship.
It’s s not that Roy had much luck with injuries either, but he did what a good coach does, he fostered great team spirit within the camp, had England very well organized, especially at the back, and brought the best out of the players he had.
The England defense last night was outstanding, they were the heroes, and who would have thought that Glen Johnson would look as good as he did in the tournament, and Joe Hart is on his way to becoming one of the best goalkeepers in the world.
Jolean Lescott looked the part too for a stand-in, as did John Terry, who was under significant pressure because of his racial trial coming up, and he at least showed what a great professional he is, and gave some stellar performances for England.
And Steven Gerrard is the right player to captain England, because his leadership skills come to the fore when he’s the captain, so all in all, England have a promising future, and maybe we’ll do well in Brazil in two years time – maybe.
And Newcastle have their best side for at least eight years, and have an excellent manager in Alan Pardew.
So although time may be running out for some of us older fans, who were around when Newcastle and England were actually winning things, we still have hope that Newcastle can win something very soon, and maybe England can too.
But Newcastle have a good chance of winning something in the next two years – we hope Newcastle have a good chance of winning something in the next two years. 😀
Hope springs eternal – maybe next season?
Howay The Lads!!