Last night's England game was a rather useful exercise for many reasons, it also showed just how wrong some people including Fabio Capello have been in the selection of players. The lack of pace and width at the World Cup was obvious and last night the introduction of the likes of Walcott, Johnson, Young and Gibbs made a huge difference. Walcott had a fantastic first half, incisive and dangerous throughout. Johnson had a decent game, Ashley Young was outstanding in the second half, Kieran Gibbs did brilliantly at left back and made some fantastic forward bursts. Of note Zamora also did very well as a second half substitute. Poor old Jack Wilshere was unlucky enough to spend the night before the game in hospital with abdominal pains, this meant he was limited to a very short ten minute run out at the end. The 'goal' given to Hungary by a rather stupid French linesman was yet another solid reason why video technology needs to be used in football in the modern age.
It is obvious Capello blundered with his world cup selections, and it is also obvious that various so called experts have repeatedly failed to notice how important pace and width are at international level. Capello took Joe Cole to the world cup and didn't play him, he played a deeply average player with no pace by the name of Milner; Johnson, Young and Walcott were left at home. It is clear that Gerrard and Lampard cannot play together as they both like to take that space behind the striker in the attacking part of the midfield. Hart was the best English keeper last season but was never given any England games.
It is also clear that those who bemoan that the foreign players are killing the England team are speaking rubbish. There is a very good crop of players coming through; the likes of Hart, Young, Walcott, Johnson, Wilshere and Gibbs just need more games and their time will come. It is funny how many people are so keen to point out how Arsene Wenger never gives English players a chance, however this is the man who has sculpted the best youth system in the land which is now producing the best English talent around, it is very silent in the media as regards pointing this fact out, strange that. It is also ironic that sides like the Spuds who have their side full of overpriced English players have youth systems that are producing very few English players who are up to proper first team football.
The Mark Schwarzer saga looks set to rumble on. I may be way off mark but reading between the lines it appears that Fulham are trying to hide the fact that he has made a formal transfer request to the club. This is a tad dishonest from Fulham. Obviously Fulham are within their rights to try to hold on to their own player, but if he has made a transfer request to them and they are dishonestly denying this fact, then that is out of order. Players are entitled to make formal transfer requests and if Mark Hughes is being a bit naughty in hiding this, then it is entirely in character as he is a rather unpleasant individual, something I believe he partially learnt from 'Sir' Alex. No wonder Schwarzer wants out, spend a season struggling at the wrong end of the table with a Welsh authoritarian at the helm or a nice move to the Emirates, not a hard choice is it.
ps I noticed that Goodplaya has made some similar points about the bitter sniping about the Arsenal youngsters in the England squad. It is strange how some people will whinge when there are no good young English players and blame Arsene Wenger for it, yet then when we start producing some of the best young players around they whinge for a completely different set of reasons. Some people just don't like Arsenal, their pathetic hypocrisy stinks.