World Cup: 2018 WC Qualifiers Part II

Discussion in 'Soccer' started by Bures Elbow, Jun 9, 2017.

  1. N o o d l e s

    N o o d l e s Registered User

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    I’m sorry but I don’t see how that England roster makes a deep run at the WC
     
  2. Live in the Now

    Live in the Now Registered User

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    I didn't see how Costa Rica would either and they were one PK session away from the SF. They were a sure thing to be last in their group. I didn't think Wales would advance at the Euros. On paper they were a pretty weak team besides two players.

    Fact is there's no way to know who will advance and who won't. It is all about being in the right moment, which players are in form, who gets injured, and who you play. Considering the groups aren't even drawn it's silly to rule anything out, other than to name some teams favorites. I keep going back to France and Brazil when thinking about favorites, but it's so early that we don't even know which players will be in good form heading into this.
     
  3. N o o d l e s

    N o o d l e s Registered User

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    Just seems funny to have seen their performance in the last WC and the Euros and to see everyone essentially calling for a massive overhaul of English football then expect them to make a deep run stat every next tournament with very little roster changes
     
  4. Live in the Now

    Live in the Now Registered User

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    They made a pretty big overhaul when they fired a brain dead coach. Ultimately they will go as far as Kane takes them, and he's better now than he was in the summer of 2016. So we'll see. They only have two players in their whole setup with more than 50 caps, so it's not like they're trying the same players over and over again anymore.

    I do hope they fail, but unlike other tournaments when they had Hodgson I do not believe this is a sure thing. They still have a keeper who can tank the whole team, though.
     
  5. Havre

    Havre Registered User

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    England won´t have the best team player for player of course, but these tournaments are also about which teams that gel and which players are on a hot streak. A guy like Kane could easily score a goal a game or he can play his worst football for years like he did in the Euros.

    A lot can happen before the summer, but behind France and Germany few teams will on paper look rock solid all the way through. England will have some weak spots as well, but their depth should actually be quite decent. I don´t agree at all with the line-up posted here earlier.

    GK: Pickford. Has not taken that next step yet. I do note rate Hart. Butland and Heaton are decent. Do not know Gunn. Huge drop compared to Neuer, DDG, Lloris etc.
    RB: Walker. Excellent player. Certain top 3-5 in the world for me. Got solid depth with Clyne and Trippier (even if Clyne might not have enough time to fully get back to his best).
    LB: Rose. Even better than Walker in my opinion. Should be just enough time for him to get back to his best again before the summer. Won´t find many better. Some decent depth here as well.
    CDs: England got to pray Gomez can keep on developing. They need him. If Stones can progress. Maguire is IMO underrated. Should be able to field three decent CDs, but I don´t expect any of them to be top class come summer.
    MF: A bit similar to the CDs they got a bunch of decent ones, but no-one really top class at the moment. I see Curtinho wanted Ox - Henderson - Loftus. I´m not sure if I would have played any of them while also recognising they could be the three come summer. I´m probably a bit biased, but to me Winks is the most talented, but if he is able to take that next step one can never know. Dier is boring and inconsistent, but when he is on song he is a terrific DM. Lallana seems to play well for England. Then how do you fit a guy like Sterling? I really have no clue.
    ST: Kane is as good as any. Vardy, Sturridge and Rashford should be decent back-ups - as one of them should be in form.

    Pickford
    Walker - Gomez - Maguire - Stones - Rose
    Alli - Winks - Lallana
    Sterling
    Kane​

    Biggest problem for me would be Sterling. Should play wider. Could go Dier - Winks or Dier - Henderson centrally with Sterling and Alli/Lallana behind Kane - so that Sterling can drift wider.

    Not a bad team for me if Kane plays well. That is not a given for England though.
     
  6. cgf

    cgf FireBednarsSuccessor

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    Even without Germany / France that roster doesn't stack up with Brazil / Spain / Argentina / Portugal / Croatia / Colombia / Uruguay / Belgium or even Poland :dunno:
     
  7. Deficient Mode

    Deficient Mode Registered User

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    Wales was not a weak team aside from two players. A quarterfinal run for Costa Rica isn't really that deep. There is a surprise semi or quarterfinalist almost every cup, but they never win.
     
  8. Havre

    Havre Registered User

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    True for the World Cup (even if that Dutch team almost making it in 2010 hardly was a fantastic team). Not really true for the EUROs. 2 out of the last 7 were huge upsets.
     
  9. cgf

    cgf FireBednarsSuccessor

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    But Russia is hosting a World Cup, not a European one...
     
  10. Havre

    Havre Registered User

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    Thank you for another valuable contribution. What is your point? Wales was mentioned as an example. So in that context I don’t see the need for a sarcastic remark.

    Anyway. I prefer discussion not commentary. But each to their own.
     
  11. Deficient Mode

    Deficient Mode Registered User

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    For one thing, with the competition opened up to the whole world, that typically adds a couple more supremely talented South American sides in addition to the top European sides. More superior teams means longer odds for an underdog; they won't all be in bad form, have locker room issues, fall in the same side of the bracket, or get unlucky bounces or refereeing. England isn't more of a long shot to win a European championship than Portugal were last summer. The World Cup is another story.
     
  12. Havre

    Havre Registered User

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    Of course adding Brazil and Argentina (basically) makes it tougher, but one shouldn’t exaggerate the effect. Statistically the sample size is so tiny it is not possible to conclude that the Euros can be won by underdogs, but not the WC.

    I could easily see a team worse than England winning the WC at some point.
     
  13. Corto

    Corto Faceless Man

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    Subasic, Kalinic, Livakovic
    Vrsaljko, Corluka, Vida, Lovren, Strinic, 1 of Jedvaj/Leovac/Barisic
    Modric, Kovacic, Rakitic, Badelj, Rog, Brozovic, Vlasic, Pasalic
    Mandzukic, Perisic, Kramaric, Kalinic, Pjaca, Rebic

    Will be the 23, barring injuries, and assuming Corluka and Pjaca recover and get in form on time.

    The 3-5-2 wouldn't work, Vrsaljko is a perfect RB in a 4-man defense and lacking offensively if he's alone on the wing.
    Perisic OTOH is fantastic as a winger who helps out the defense and grinds it out in his own half, but he is not fit to do the defending alone in the way a LB/LWB would do.
    We also don't run 3 at the back, and the starting 2 CBs should be Corluka and Vida. Lovren is playing great for the NT, in a system that doesn't leave him out in the open against counter-attacking sides like in Liverpool, but he's still behind Corluka and Vida.
    Strinic will be at LB - an adequate, if not great player. Compared to Cacic's favorite Pivaric, he's like Maldini back there.


    Starting 11 should probably be something like this, now that our manager is no longer the tool that Cacic was:

    Subasic
    Vrsaljko, Corluka, Vida, Strinic
    Rakitic, Modric, Kovacic/Badelj/Brozovic (hopefully a recovered Kovacic)
    Kramaric, Mandzukic, Perisic

    The defense is fine, filled with mostly underrated players (AFAIC Vida could play for almost any team in Europe, he just prefered big money in Ukraine, money that bigger league clubs weren't willing to pay - his contract is running out Jan 1st, we'll see where he lands; Corluka was doing great in Russia pre-injury, and same goes for him, he prefers the stupid amounts of money in Russia - reportedly the highest paid player in Russia). Strinic is the weak link, but a starting LB for Sampdoria doesn't sound BAD, and isn't. He's limited, but not bad. Vrsaljko pretty good already, will only get better.
    So, in essence, not great, but certainly good enough to face off against anyone.

    Midfield trio of Modric/Rakitic/Kovacic I'll happily have compete against anyone in the world, with Rog potentailly being the X factor down the line.

    What we lack is a top-class pure goalscorer. Mandzukic is not that player, and Kalinic is the type for it - but doesn't have the quality.
    If Pjaca recovers in time, there's always the possibility of playing him at RW and Kramaric moving in the middle, depending on the opposition we're facing.

    All in all, the mentality will be what decides our fate. What we usually do when we have a generation of players like this is beat a Germany or a Spain, then proceed to mess up and lose to a largely inferior team in a boring game in which we never look like scoring (2008 Turkey or 2016 Portugal).
    That, and it would be nice not to get robbed by the refs like we were in Brazil.

    ...

    Overall, I think people are forgetting about Spain. They're in the tier 1 favorite pot, AFAIC, with Germany, France and Brazil.
    Then comes a bunch of other teams that can go all the way, but all have one issue or another.
    I'd put Croatia (and Belgium) in that second group. Both teams are stacked with world class players (especially Belgium), but whether they will believe they can win it all remains to be seen.
    It's certainly part of what seemed to hinder Belgium in 2014 (well, that and inept coaching).
     
  14. maclean

    maclean Registered User

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    Oh, I want to be optimistic, but I've been burned in the past :laugh: Still fresh in my mind is being runners-up at the U20 World Cup and thinking that generation would pick up the reins from Koller, Baroš and the rest of the past-their-prime core. Then Fenin went to Germany, partied too much and dropped off the face of the earth and where are they all now? Pekhart is playing in Israel, that's about the only person from that team who made it anywhere, but his path is a typical one of almost breaking through in England, one good season in the Bundesliga, but never really ending up getting anywhere. So many youth players go to second-rate Bundesliga teams and end up warming the bench. Darida's really the only one who's stuck and actually become a core player with upside. I guess Kadeřábek has a fairly solid position too. I do like this new wave of kids in the Serie A and that's promising, though I'd like it better if Schick hadn't got injured right away and had actually got some minutes and proven himself at Roma.
     
  15. Live in the Now

    Live in the Now Registered User

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    Nobody said they would win. There are around 12-13 teams that could make the SF depending on circumstances and 24 or so that could make the QF. Would it surprise me if England made the SF? No. Would it surprise me if they sucked? Also no.
     
  16. Deficient Mode

    Deficient Mode Registered User

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    Eh, you didn't say they'd win, but the conversation sort of started on the premise that they'd win one of the next three.

    Seems we all agree "so there's a chance" encapsulates the English chances next summer. Some just downplay it and some play it up.
     
  17. Savi

    Savi Registered User

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    When is he projected to return?
     
  18. Creed Bratton

    Creed Bratton Registered User

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    I like the lineup you posted. Winks is quite the underrated holding midfielder. I agree that Sterling is the largest issue, and he is the largest reason as to why I would probably prefer a 3-4-3.

    Pickford
    Maguire/Gomez - Jones - Stones
    Walker - Dier - Winks - Rose
    Lallana - Sterling/Dele
    Kane
    My predicted squad as of right now:

    GK: Pickford, Butland, anybody but Hart. Nick Pope deserves a fair shout if he can keep it up. None of these options are particularly great.

    Full/Wingbacks: Walker, Rose and Bertrand are a given. Trippier will compete with Clyne for the last spot. Good quality an all of them.

    Central defense: Jones, Stone, Maguire, Cahill, Gomez. Decent enough.

    Deeper central midfield: Winks, Dier and Henderson are a given IMO. I think they need a fourth guy too though, even if Lallana can fill in. I don't find that RLC or AOC fit this deeper role particularly much. I'd probably give Delph a shout. Winks is crucial to the deeper midfield.

    Attacking midfield: Lallana, Alli and Sterling are a given. All of them get to play in the role better suited for them. Here too I think we need a fourth guy. I think it would come down to one of AOC or RLC. Which means that one of them would not make the final 23-man squad.

    Strikers: Kane, Rashford, and one of Vardy or Sturridge.
     
  19. Havre

    Havre Registered User

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    If Alli stays average I would go 3-4-3 with Lallana and Sterling. But Alli looked sluggish for quite some time last year as well. If he starts scoring like he did one year ago he got to play - then 3-5-2 is probably better.

    Completely forgot about Jones. Would definitely play in a back 3 if he is fit. Big question mark bringing a player like him in to a tournament though.
     
  20. HajdukSplit

    HajdukSplit Registered User

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    He is training at the moment and playing in some reserve team games (don't know what they are called in Italy). So he should be fit to play soon but question is how much playing time he will get

    Corto, maybe with Dalic it will be different but usually at big tournaments 1-2 "HNLers" manage to find themselves on the list, even though most don't deserve it. We saw it with Zelenika at Brazil and Coric in France. Only problem these days there are very few young Croatians playing in Dinamo/Rijeka/Hajduk :D And believe me, I'm not naïve enough to think Dalic is clean either, I don't believe for one second he isn't a Mamic guy, could be wrong as I don't live in CRO, but apparently he helped Zoran Mamic get a job in UAE and is involved in that Varazdin project which the HNS is fully behind
     
  21. koyvoo

    koyvoo For Badgeholders Only

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    Once again, just because it’s mind boggling how they aren’t perennially rated a b-c level international side, below is a list of each and every single knock out game that England have ever won in the entire history of major tournament play. These results do not include two tournaments played on home soil (1966lol and 1996)

    • 3-0 v Paraguay, 1986 World Cup
    • 1-0 v Belgium AET, 1990 World Cup
    • 3-2 v Cameroon AET, 1990 World Cup
    • 3-0 v Denmark, 2002 World Cup
    • 1-0 v Ecuador, 2006 World Cup


    That’s it. Since the first inception of major tournament play, these are the only sides England have ever been able to beat when the chips are down. Ever. Not one tournament favourite in that entire list. Barely a tournament dark horse on that list. People need to be realistic and stop being sheep the media’s narrative.
     
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  22. Pouchkine

    Pouchkine Registered User

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    That says it all.
     
  23. YNWA14

    YNWA14 Onbreekbaar

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    Who is not being realistic? Where is anyone calling England favourites of any kind? You're arguing against yourself.

    As for Lallana...I'm not sure he really fits into a team playing deep and looking to hit on the counter. He slows down the play too much in possession and isn't very quick getting forward. His passing from deep isn't the greatest. He's a good transition player to link up with other more direct players, he presses extremely well and his link up is good in shorter distances. He can be really streaky in the final third but when he's on he's a big threat there too. That said he would fit in better to a 3-5-2 than a 3-4-3 IMO. He's not much of a wide player. I could see a midfield 3 with Dier/Henderson as the holder behind Lallana and Dele with Chambo as a back-up working really well (assuming Lallana can stay healthy, and comes back strong from his injury). Realistically their best 11, IMO, come the summer would probably be this (IMO):

    Pickford
    Gomez - Jones - Stones
    Walker -------- Dier* -------- Rose
    Lallana** - Dele
    Sterling
    Kane
    With Sterling and Kane having freedom to roam. Guys like Maguire, Bertrand, Henderson, Chamberlain, Rashford and Sturridge deputizing (*Henderson could start over Dier, **Chamberlain could start over Lallana if he continues to develop).

    EDIT: So basically what Havre suggested but I don't think Sterling struggles centrally. He was fantastic there with Liverpool, though that was behind Sturridge/Suarez. He still looked fairly good as the focal point in Rodgers' side the next season playing centrally but his final ball left a lot to be desired. I think playing with Kane and Dele that would be less of an issue.
     
    Last edited: Nov 17, 2017
  24. koyvoo

    koyvoo For Badgeholders Only

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    It’s not a point of calling them favourites or not. Lol. Clearly their not. It’s more the to the point of wondering where the idea ever came from that they’re a top tier footballing nation. They are, and have routinely proven to be nothing more than fodder. And until they ever prove otherwise, they should be considered nothing more than fodder. It is confusing to me how apparently knowledgeable students of the game mention them in the same breath as nations two to three tiers above them.
     
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  25. Pouchkine

    Pouchkine Registered User

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    Perfectly said again!
     

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