Wednesday, June 25, 2014

Not good enough

Well, not cricket scores against us by the Dutch or Spanish and a much better team performance in both matches.

What was really disappointing was that too many of our players don't seem to be able to concentrate and don't understand the basics of the game.

Against the Dutch we would have won if we'd scored the third goal - but the decision to take a side-foot shot when the ball was sitting up perfectly for a shot off the instep meant it sailed over the bar instead of into the net. And then a basic goalkeeping error allowed a stoppable shot to go in for the winning goal.

Against Spain the first fifteen minutes were good but then it all fell apart and the Spanish strolled it without ever going into top gear.

The concentration levels and basic mistakes were the main problem. Our right back was missing in action, allowing endless threats and goals to come from unmarked players on the Spanish left wing, and the opposite flank wasn't much better.

And ball-watching allowed unmarked players acres of space in which to create danger and score goals.

We have a problem with this squad of players, in that their skill levels are way below what's needed at international level. Whether they have the raw talent to learn the skills is doubtful in my opinion.

But making excuses for them being young and inexperienced at this level misses the real problems. 

The basics of marking a man, not allowing them space, stopping the crosses, are something schoolboy footballers understand so there's absolutely no excuse for these 'elite' players. Nor is there any excuse for them not to be able to concentrate and focus on their duties for ninety minutes.

And those are the really disappointing let-downs.

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