Pirlo was magnificent and England will know they were second best
I feel for England. I’ve been there myself. Penalty heartbreak always stays with you. But the better team won and the tournament’s best four teams are in the semi-final.
If England are honest, they’ll know they were second best.
They looked tired in midfield and Steven Gerrrard and Scott Parker needed help in there.
No one got near Andrea Pirlo. I’m not convinced England should have man-marked him but they certainly could have done a better job getting around him.
I would have asked Rooney to play in a central role behind the striker so he could drop in and get around Pirlo.
There was a 20-minute period in the first half where England were the best they’ve been in the tournament. They played with a lot of energy in that period and broke quickly and got about the Italians but they weren’t able to keep it going.
Italy had more composure and were able to keep the ball much better and they got on top because of that. Ultimately, I thought England looked like a very tired team.
I don’t think Wayne Rooney was match fit. He’s one of those players that needs to play every week and, if they miss some games, take a few weeks to get back to full fitness.
Roy Hodgson has done so much right it in this tournament but I felt he should have given Rooney a full 90 minutes in one of the pre-tournament friendlies.
You can do all the running you like in training, after that first game back you always feel it.
Tonight, I didn’t have any problems with the changes Roy made. In fairness, he could have changed either central midfield player. Gerrard was out on his feet and went down with cramp on 70 minutes. The captain did well to even finish the game.
Theo Walcott didn’t have the same impact on the game that he made when he was introduced against Sweden. He showed glimpses of his pace but not enough. England didn’t give him enough of the ball. Every time they won the ball they gave it away immediately. Andy Carroll has his limitations but I thought he did OK when he came on. He had to live of scraps though.
I thought John Terry and Glen Johnson had good games but Italy did well exposing Terry’s lack of pace. Antonio Cassano dropped deep to create space for Andrea Pirlo to put balls in behind.
At this level, the threat of being defensively exposed is always there so England tend to drop deeper and deeper. Tonight was the first time in the tournament that the England defence actually caught an opposition player offside! That alone shows how deep they have to defend because of Terry’s lack of pace.
England stuck with the rigid two banks of four and were forced further and further back and allowed the opposition to have more and more possession. In contrast, Italy pushed on. The two full-backs bombed on, almost playing like wingers at times. I’ve seen all Italy’s games through the tournament and they have impressed me with their ball retention.
Pirlo is a magician, he’s been magnificent. His penalty tonight was unbelievable. I’ve seen one player, Paolo di Canio, take one like that in a game for a team I played in. But on that stage, wow, Pirlo must have nerves of steel!
You risk looking extremely stupid if it goes wrong. It was a moment of genius. His performance was exceptional.
Yes, he had plenty of time and space, far more than England would have liked, but he was utterly immense.
Why play Rooney? Last world cup showed he has no skill. Rooney played as though he was playing for a pub team. I would not even entertain him in the premiership. Let China have him.
Over paid, Over rated, no football skill.
I think that Rooney should give the money he earned to a charity as he clearly does not diserve to be paid
If Rooney worked in a company he would have been sacked by now.
Let`s be honest here .
Why all the talk about Wayne Rooney returning after suspension being England`s saviour.
Why all the talk about England going all the way to the final.
Even though i`m a Man U fan , Rooney in my eyes never plays as well in an England shirt as he does for the reds.
As for the talk of England possibly reaching the final --- Jesus ; They only just beat the minnows of Ukraine and Sweden and now the`re the next World Cup Winners !!!
God knows what Germany would have done to them had they reached the semi`s.
He needs to be spoon fed the ball otherwise he is just a total waste of space. He always has been. When he had the ball he was rubbish with it. Everything must come to him, he doesnt make things happen.
Saving grace was John Terry's superb defending.
We were awful, lets not be romantic about it and bleat on about how nobody thought we would get this far in the competition, and didnt Roy and the boys do well, face the facts we were "RUBBISH", and every English person is relieved we are out of the competition, at least going out with a little dignity on penalties, than being totally taken to the cleaners by Germany. Thank god I dont have to put myself through that torture anymore, I remember watching England play through the years, as you watched going ooooooh aaaaaah as we nearly scored or showed some skill, but this has been totally different because we have been so bad i have just wanted to turn the tv off. Thank god its over i say.
Well.2nd best is about right. Rooney just showed that he is Not a Player of International quality.
It was the same in the world cup.The likes of Parker also. Terry,lescott, Gerard, Milner did well.
Joe Hart had a good game.
Mica Richards and Adam johnson should have been in the squad. England need a good Manager also.
Maybe Harry? but he does not want the job, i wonder why? Maybe because the likes of Rooney are actually rubbish at football. It did show tha the had no ball control skills.
He should never be picked for England again he is clearly not good enough even carroll played better than Rooney.
The English Premier League is about money,not about the game.
The skill level comes from players from other countries.
Thats why things will never change until you get rid of these players and reconstruct the coaching regime to invest in English talent from a young age.
And stop the high wages for players who are not worth it.
England were doing ok until Rooney joined them.
Draw your own conclusions.
What a wake up call to realise that England are a second rate outfit!
When you hear about their magnificent salaries you assume that you have a team of world beaters.
In reality I don't think that any English players on show in these finals would rank in the top 50 players of the world. They get paid the same as Bankers and, sadly, play like a bunch of bankers!
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Where will Manchester United finish this season?
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- Seventh (same as last year)
- Eighth or lower