Benitez Comments On England vs Spain Game

England won the World Cup back in 1966 and we have won nothing since that time.

And until a short 8 years ago Spain were very much like England as the major under-performers in world football having won only one major tournament – the European Championship back in 1964.

But that has all changed in the last eight years with Spain winning the Euros in both 2008 and 2012 and the World Cup in 2010.


Gareth Southgate – England’s interim manager

Three major tournaments on the trot in four magic years leaves England as the sole under-performers in world football, given that we invented the game and have some very good players.

That’s a little background on today’s friendly at Wembley between England and Spain which kicks off at 8:00 pm and it’s the fourth game under interim manager Gareth Southgate.

In his interview with the local press today Rafa was asked about the game and whether he would be neutral.

This is the diplomatic answer he gave:

“Yes of course I will be neutral,” “It is a friendly game and there is nothing to win and nothing to lose.”

There are calls to give Southgate the England manager’s job permanently, but what has Gareth ever done in management to warrant him being the England manager?

His claim to the job seem to be the England players like him.

Gareth was not as successful managing Middlesbrough as Steve McClaren was when they were relegated from the Premier League with Newcastle back in 2009.

Steve had won the League Cup with Middlesbrough in 2004 and took them to the final of the UEFA Cup in 2006 but lost 4-0 to Sevilla in the final held in Eindhoven.

And when Steve McClaren took over the England job in 2006 he had been assistant manager to Sven Eriksson for a number of years.

McClaren turned out to be one of the worst managers in England’s history, so why would it be any better for Southgate?

If Gareth is given the job we hope he’s successful for England’s sake, but it must be a long shot and the appointment will show the FA don’t exactly have high ambitions or expectations for the future.

What do you think?

Comments welcome.

4 comments so far

  • martoon

    Nov 15, 2016 at 8:37 AM

    Comment #1

    I’m pleased to read this, Ed, because I’ve been thinking the same thing. All the pundits seem to be screaming for Southgate to be appointed but what has he done in management to warrant this? Yes he seems to be a nice guy and had a decent playing career but even then he’s most famous for missing a penalty and appearing in a Pizza advert 😀

  • Jib

    Nov 15, 2016 at 8:52 AM

    Comment #2


    I think the Allardyce experience traumatised the F. A.

    So they are understandably going for Mr Clean for a while until the dust settles.

  • Ron Knee

    Nov 15, 2016 at 9:07 AM

    Comment #3

    “Could we see a decision on Jonjo Shelvey today?

    “After a long weekend off, Rafa Benitez has his men back in today to build up to Leeds United and with decision-day looming for Newcastle (they need to respond to the charge tomorrow), it’s likely there will be some kind of update.

    “We expect Shelvey to request a personal hearing to contend the misconduct charge.”

  • Jib

    Nov 15, 2016 at 9:25 AM

    Comment #4

    Rafa just loves good left backs.

    When he arrived at Liverpool he revived the career of John Arne Riise .

    He later replaced him with the Brazilian Fabio Aurelio whom he acquired from his former club Valencia.

    Then of course there’s Rafa’s great relationship with
    Ashley Cole

    He bought the classy Algerian Faouzi Ghoulam for Napoli.

    He now has another North African left back in Achraf Lazaar who I think is being built up , nurtured and prepared for the PL.


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