FIFA World Cup 2018 chat thread

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Re: FIFA World Cup 2018 chat thread

Postby Durhamfootman » Tue Jun 05, 2018 10:35 pm

If England draw with Panama in the first game, I'll probably revert to type as quickly as England do
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Re: FIFA World Cup 2018 chat thread

Postby sussexpob » Tue Jun 05, 2018 11:27 pm

All that DNA crap was the brainchild of Greg Dyke, the FA Chairman from 14-16. His undisputed brilliant footballing past at Brentford made him aptly qualified for the role of changing the English game, after all under his Chairmanship Brentford had their two worst string of results in their long history, and the season after he left they stormed up a division, and the season after nearly got promoted to the Premier League. Attendances doubled after he left. This is clearly another man who really needed to be listened to.

I think his ideas pretty much got laughed at and never became much. His grand plan of developing players through the National structure seemed to forget that virtually all national representative players are employed independently, and therefore have virtually no useful time spent with England setups for learning. He waffled on about player quotas for domestic leagues, but that got shot down.

The only partial success was his dream to replace lower league football with Academy B teams, so young players at top clubs got regular professional football. Everyone criticized that, he was the only person who thought it was a good idea. But the EFL did include for the last two years some academy teams.

They have done really well..... I think the first knockout game featuring the academy of the Premier League Champions and the team that ended up finishing bottom of the football league, ended with the later's B team shattering the young Prem lads 7-1. I dont think any academy team in 2 years has beaten a league team in a knock out game. :facepalm And this is a competition that most teams pay the couple of grand fine for not starting regulars, and send out their own 17 year olds.

So that was a great plan. Replace all of our historical lower league clubs with inferior kids.

He left the job after not long claiming that the world didnt understand his genius.
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Re: FIFA World Cup 2018 chat thread

Postby bigfluffylemon » Tue Jun 05, 2018 11:43 pm

Gingerfinch wrote:
sussexpob wrote:
1998 - Dominating the match? That's not how I remember it. I remember a decent first half, but pretty desperate defence for most of the second half. And penalties is theoretically a 50:50 shot, yet we lost. You can argue about Beckham's red card, but he was fool enough to retaliate right in front of the referee.


Argentina scored first with a very generous penalty.


That game still ranks as one of the best I've seen for pure excitement, highs and in the end lows. I haven't seen the game for a while but I'm almost certain the Argentine penalty was the correct decision.


The penalty Owen won to equalise was worse - it was a clear dive. Owen has even admitted it after the fact. It's easy to forget all the questionable refereeing decisions that go your way. In fact, it's a known psychological bias that people put more weight on and remember bad random event that happen more than ones that benefit them. See also: why does the other queue always move faster than mine, etc.

Besides, when we talk about cricket, we don't allow teams to use dodgy umpiring as an excuse. The 2010 disallowed goal is an example. Yes, if it had been allowed it would have been 2-2 at half time, but anything that might have happened or not in the second half is pure speculation. All we have are the established facts of what did happen in the second half, which is that Germany scored two more goals, and England scored none. It's a pretty big stretch to say that having your dander up a bit at half time is worth two goals. Plus every match report I've read over to remind myself of that game indicates that Germany were clearly the better team, and deserved the win.

Cricketing analogy: one game I'll always remember, as it was the first time I went to Lord's, was England v India, 2007. England dominated most of that game, and were chasing victory on the final day in a race against the weather. 9-down, Panesar bags Sreesanth lbw, clearly out on the replay, Bucknor doesn't give it. One over later the rain arrives, and India escape with a draw. They then go on to win the next match, draw the third (dominating most of the play), and take the series 1-0. Do we look back and say that if England had taken the first test and had their dander up, they'd have gone on to win the series, and strike the result from our mental records? Or do we concede that India were the better team than England over the course of the series, and deserved the honours? Was the draw Bucknor's fault, or was it England's, for being behind on the over rate when they knew there was rain on the way?

And that still doesn't address the fact that we couldn't beat Algeria (who may have defended deep, but the USA and Slovenia had no trouble beating them), or the USA, who went out to the mighty Ghana in the next round. England were the top ranked team in that group by quite some margin, but only managed to scrape a win in one game.

But this speaks to a pattern of performance I mentioned above. We never, ever beat good teams in global tournaments. We always find a way to lose. We're almost invariably seeded first or second in our group, yet struggle to get out of it against opposition who, on paper we should comfortably beat. And I can't remember the last time we actually beat a team ranked in the FIFA global top 16. Was it Argentina 2002?

So why do we have keepers who make elementary blunders, when other sides don't? Why do we lose every penalty shoot-out when other sides don't? Why do we have players who are dumb enough to let the other side get under their skin until they lash out right in front of the referee while other sides are at least smart enough to wait until the referee is looking the other way to cheat? Why do we (apparently) dominate so many matches that we then go on to lose, failing miserably to convert possession/territory into goals, while other sides slot home their chances?

If it happened once or twice, you could be justified in claiming bad luck, these things happen. When it happens time after time, and England routinely fail to beat sides that are ranked far below them, and then fall over the first time they meet up against a top 16 side, you have to question if there's something systematic wrong. Just about everything I mentioned above - keeping errors, lashing out, bottling penalties, all indicate an ability to handle the pressure of the big occasion.
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Re: FIFA World Cup 2018 chat thread

Postby sussexpob » Wed Jun 06, 2018 1:46 am

Besides, when we talk about cricket, we don't allow teams to use dodgy umpiring as an excuse. The 2010 disallowed goal is an example. Yes, if it had been allowed it would have been 2-2 at half time, but anything that might have happened or not in the second half is pure speculation. All we have are the established facts of what did happen in the second half, which is that Germany scored two more goals, and England scored none. It's a pretty big stretch to say that having your dander up a bit at half time is worth two goals. Plus every match report I've read over to remind myself of that game indicates that Germany were clearly the better team, and deserved the win.


I'll give you a stat just to demonstrate my point. This fact was true as of the New Year 2018, it might have changed but I dont think it did; the current Premier League champions have not won a Premier League game away from their home ground for 22 years when trailing at half time. In that period, 30% of their Premier League seasons have ended in the title, about half have ended in champions league football, so we arent talking about a team who are consistently poor generally. And its key to note, their draw ratio is unbelievably low too..... in nearly 100 instances of being down at half time, they had won none and only drawn something like 10-12 by memory. The other 85-90 odd they lost. They arent actually alone either. I think the stats showed at the time 4 odd teams had never done it. Southampton I think were about 18 years. I think one other team was in double figures. United and Liverpool I think were about 3 years each.

You can call that speculation, but it would seem that "having your dander up" at half time greatly effects final results, and is pretty well evidenced through footballing history. Its also pretty much provable through statistics.

England are 2/1 on scoring 2 goals against Belgium in their World Cup match. I guess you could say that half the game has gone in this scenario, with half the scenario complete, so an odd of 2/1 on a goal to draw. That would leave England facing an 8/1 chance of winning the game. Id say working it out roughly on how it would work on a three way split, youd be looking at

Draw - 16/5
Germany win probability - 2/5
England - 8/1

The Germany win is 20 times more likely.

Take it at 2-2..... assuming Germany as slight favourites (like Belgium) we give them 6/4 on the goal. England's odds on scoring factoring in the Germans difference would leave

Draw - 15/8
England - 21/10
Germany - 6/4

The Germany win is 1.25 times more likely.

Massive difference.
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Re: FIFA World Cup 2018 chat thread

Postby sussexpob » Wed Jun 06, 2018 2:04 am

Either way, the question was about the performance, and my view is you can no longer fairly assess the performance once the ref rules out a perfectly acceptable goal. At that stage the whole fabric of what is required changes, you have to take risks in a knockout game, those risks come with detriments. To beat Germany we were essentially asked to score two more goals than they managed, and the chances of doing that in a half of football were very difficult. What I can say is, England showed character to come back, and at the time of the decision had score 2 goals and were swinging the match their way. As a result you have to ignore it and say the outcome was unfairly compromised. Had it been a best of three game, or a two legged affair then maybe its different because there are other factors in play.

Momentum plays a big part in sport. To use your cricket example, can their be a less disheartening thing then to know you won a match, but lost it to an umpire? What kind of boost does it give the drawing team to come out of a lost situation and approach the next game fresh and unscathed?

You might say its pressure and the big boys should be able to control it, but even the best are subject to that..... look at someone like Serena Williams, didnt she once lose a grandslam final to one of the belge girls because she went mental and was docked a game on a line call reaction? Shes the best womens sportstar arguably ever.
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Re: FIFA World Cup 2018 chat thread

Postby bigfluffylemon » Wed Jun 06, 2018 4:05 am

sussexpob wrote:You might say its pressure and the big boys should be able to control it, but even the best are subject to that..... look at someone like Serena Williams, didnt she once lose a grandslam final to one of the belge girls because she went mental and was docked a game on a line call reaction? Shes the best womens sportstar arguably ever.


But the difference is that Serena has 39 grand slam titles to her name. She's come back plenty of times from a set down to win a match, even in finals. So she's clearly got the mental toughness to bring her best performances when it counts. That incident can legitimately be considered a one-off bit of bad luck. She's also had plenty of situations over the years where she's had a dodgy line call, or an injury, and sucked it up and battled through it to win anyway.
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Whereas England haven't even made a semi-final, let alone a final, for 22 years, and seem to succumb to the pressure every time.

I think we're not going to agree on the 2010 incident, so I'll leave it there. I maintain that England have not achieved what they could and should have achieved, and have hence underperformed, certainly relative to their seeding and FIFA ranking, in every tournament since at least 2002.
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Re: FIFA World Cup 2018 chat thread

Postby sussexpob » Wed Jun 06, 2018 12:40 pm

BFL,

You question why our players dont do well under these pressures, but do you not acknowledge the irony that hidden in your own words is the reason why? You called the 2014 performance an "utter disgrace". We lost to the second most successful nation in football history in a game we were at least deserving of a point in, in searing heat and near 100% humidity (we visibly looked knackered in the latter stages). We played the reigning champions of South America, in a game on their border that was more like a home atmosphere for them, and conceded the only two shots they had on target, where as we had treble the chances, hit the bar, forced a few good saves, Rooney missed with daylight around him from 6 yards. The performance wasnt magical, but again we didnt deserve to lose. Id hardly call that an utter disgrace. We lost two games by a very tight margin, and gave good accounts for ourselves.

But then again, utter disgrace was the narrative. Ian Wright suggested players should be forced to call the families of dead Afghan veterans to apologize. The vitrol and hate flowed as it usually does. No one really took the time out to think that we actually did ok. It was a young team in large, it wasnt expected to storm the tournament.

Taking it all aside, when have we been disgraced in World Cups? Look at it in terms of normal boundaries as penalties are an artificial way to decide who wins a game for a tournament sake, the actually game is neither lost nor won really.

1990 - Drew with what is remembered as Germany's best ever team.
1998 - Drew with a double time world champion, but should have won if not for a bad ref call disallowing a goal
2002 - Lost to a very good Brazil team, but there was no disgrace in that. They were a quality outfit and went onto win the tournament.
2006 - Drew with Portugal. A team that had made the Euro finals the tournament before.
2010 - Aforementioned game. Lost to the foundation of a team that won the World Cup 4 years later in a match with another very poor decision.

Its hardly that bad is it?

Euros....

1996 - Drew with the Champions
2000 - Beat Germany in that tournament didnt we? Although had a poor group performance overall.
2004 - Drew with Portugal
2012 - Drew with Italy

So no team has "beat us" in a normal 90 minutes in a knockout game in the Euros for a long while.
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Re: FIFA World Cup 2018 chat thread

Postby sussexpob » Wed Jun 06, 2018 12:47 pm

Id say judging on my lifetime, the only way to appease people back home is to make the last 4. No matter how well you play, no matter if you lose on penalties in a much you should have won to a world beating team....dont make the semi's, you will be ripped apart when you land back. And you ask the question why our players crumble under pressure? Probably because the country feeds so much negativity into things. So on occasions we only make it out the groups and lose to the first decent team. Still makes you a top 10 in the world side, its hardly a national embarrassment is it?

It refreshing to be in Belgium for the lead up to this tournament. People getting behind the spirit of it all, positivity, a bit of a "who cares if we win, its the world cup, it will be fun". A bit of togetherness. No journo's here already setting up the fall guy for the end like England are doing to Sterling. No hate..... Just wonderful really.

Read the Spanish, French, Belgian, South American press..... ok, there are expectations in some nations to do well, but more than often pre-tournament its excitement.

The British press is already dripping with toxicity.
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Re: FIFA World Cup 2018 chat thread

Postby budgetmeansbudget » Wed Jun 06, 2018 2:47 pm

Belgium have a team with a number of world class players so I'd be looking forward to the tournament if I was a supporter.

I think this will be one of the first times that England go into this competition with zero expectation from media and supporters alike. Not much talk about how we'll do in the tournament, but plenty on how the players might react to racist abuse.

A win of any description will do for me, as my expectation is for them to go out in the group stages.
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Re: FIFA World Cup 2018 chat thread

Postby sussexpob » Wed Jun 06, 2018 8:10 pm

Lukaku has been so poor this year. He just missed a chance v Egypt from about 3 yards out. Although first 20 minutes, Belgium look depressingly slick.
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Re: FIFA World Cup 2018 chat thread

Postby Gingerfinch » Wed Jun 06, 2018 8:15 pm

sussexpob wrote:Id say judging on my lifetime, the only way to appease people back home is to make the last 4. No matter how well you play, no matter if you lose on penalties in a much you should have won to a world beating team....dont make the semi's, you will be ripped apart when you land back. And you ask the question why our players crumble under pressure? Probably because the country feeds so much negativity into things. So on occasions we only make it out the groups and lose to the first decent team. Still makes you a top 10 in the world side, its hardly a national embarrassment is it?

It refreshing to be in Belgium for the lead up to this tournament. People getting behind the spirit of it all, positivity, a bit of a "who cares if we win, its the world cup, it will be fun". A bit of togetherness. No journo's here already setting up the fall guy for the end like England are doing to Sterling. No hate..... Just wonderful really.

Read the Spanish, French, Belgian, South American press..... ok, there are expectations in some nations to do well, but more than often pre-tournament its excitement.

The British press is already dripping with toxicity.


Most people I speak to will be happy with last 8 and see England play some good Football. Last 4 will be a brucie bonus!
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Re: FIFA World Cup 2018 chat thread

Postby sussexpob » Wed Jun 06, 2018 8:17 pm

sussexpob wrote:Lukaku has been so poor this year. He just missed a chance v Egypt from about 3 yards out. Although first 20 minutes, Belgium look depressingly slick.


Within 2 minutes of that post, Lukaku scores ......

But it was a tap in from 1 yard out with the keeper on the floor (literally)
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Re: FIFA World Cup 2018 chat thread

Postby bigfluffylemon » Wed Jun 06, 2018 11:09 pm

Gingerfinch wrote:
sussexpob wrote:Id say judging on my lifetime, the only way to appease people back home is to make the last 4. No matter how well you play, no matter if you lose on penalties in a much you should have won to a world beating team....dont make the semi's, you will be ripped apart when you land back. And you ask the question why our players crumble under pressure? Probably because the country feeds so much negativity into things. So on occasions we only make it out the groups and lose to the first decent team. Still makes you a top 10 in the world side, its hardly a national embarrassment is it?

It refreshing to be in Belgium for the lead up to this tournament. People getting behind the spirit of it all, positivity, a bit of a "who cares if we win, its the world cup, it will be fun". A bit of togetherness. No journo's here already setting up the fall guy for the end like England are doing to Sterling. No hate..... Just wonderful really.

Read the Spanish, French, Belgian, South American press..... ok, there are expectations in some nations to do well, but more than often pre-tournament its excitement.

The British press is already dripping with toxicity.


Most people I speak to will be happy with last 8 and see England play some good Football. Last 4 will be a brucie bonus!


I'd have been pretty happy with a last 8 in either of the previous tournaments. This year I think given the inexperience of the team and their seeding, last 8 would represent a good result. We do have a reasonably favourable draw - two fairly weak sides in the group, and last 16 will most likely face Poland or Colombia, who are no mugs, but definitely beatable. If the team plays to its potential, last 8 is possible. If they can achieve that and play some good football on the way, I'll be more than happy.

And I think you forgot Iceland in 2016 sussex.
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Re: FIFA World Cup 2018 chat thread

Postby mikesiva » Thu Jun 07, 2018 7:41 am

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Re: FIFA World Cup 2018 chat thread

Postby sussexpob » Thu Jun 07, 2018 8:50 am

bigfluffylemon wrote: And I think you forgot Iceland in 2016 sussex.


Yeah, but Iceland seems like one of those red herring arguments where everyone looks at it on the basis that Iceland are a pub side, when in actual reality they have done pretty well for a while against top teams. They beat Holland twice to qualify for that tournament, as well as Turkey and the Czechs. Think they beat Croatia too recently (and gave them a bit of a scare in the WC 2014 qualifying playoff), who are the bookies 5th favourites for this tournament. They have taken other results against teams ranked in the top 25 teams.
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