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|>>|| No. 8320
Based on that first half against Nigeria, football's coming home.
|>>|| No. 8322
England are about to make their fifth substitution. How does that work? I thought it was supposed to be three, plus one in extra time.
|>>|| No. 8325
Thanks. Also fair play to UEFA for still having an article from 2004 in their "news" section.
|>>|| No. 8328
That has to be the least convincing 5 - 0 I've ever seen.
Russia were poor but that Saudi side were even worse; it's going to be a massacre when they face Uruguay.
|>>|| No. 8329
They're tiny and lost 2 goals via headers. Hardly surprising really. They defended like primary school children though, unbelievable at the WC, so Russia barely worked up a sweat for there goals. One was an out and out wonder goal. It should have been 3 really, but Saudis collapsed in the final 3 minutes.
They deserved to win, regardless, but they wont beat Uruguay or Egypt unless they vastly improve their passing.
|>>|| No. 8330
So which of Tunisia and Panama is going through as second from England's group?
|>>|| No. 8331
Morocco looking good, could defo upset Portugal if they take their chances.
Watched the BBC UHD stream earlier, it was like looking through a window. Sort of unsettling until you get used to it.
|>>|| No. 8332
I think England will get out of the group this time round, from that point forward I wouldn't bet money on it.
Belgium are, historically speaking, the team which looks most like a world cup winning team according to an analysis of previous winners. They'll for sure beat England, but if team with Sterling, Kane and Alli up front in it can't beat Tunisia and Panama then there is something seriously wrong with the mentality of those players.
|>>|| No. 8333
>Belgium are, historically speaking, the team which looks most like a world cup winning team according to an analysis of previous winners.
Most accounts are saying that Roberto Martínez is doing a fairly poor job of managing them so, even with Courtois at his disposal in goal, Alderweireld, Kompany and Vertonghen in defence, De Bruyne, Dembélé and Hazard in midfield and Batshuayi and Lukaku up front, he could still cock it all up with poor decisions and tactics.
|>>|| No. 8339
>Equaled his previous 3 WC goal tally in one match.
This is lacking a bit of self-awareness, but it was a top match.
48 team World Cup's will make that a thing of the past in the group stages though.
|>>|| No. 8340
I can't even grind Fortnite 14 hours a day without having this shite forced down my throat.
|>>|| No. 8341
I never got the hours and hours of tedious "football analysis" that follows any major football event.
One team kicked the ball into the net more, the same, or fewer times than the other. I don't get this like, shoddy stats - trying to evaluate human error and the like. Does anyone find this stuff vaguely interesting? Poring over every second of the game? Or is it just for those armchair managers you overhear in any pub?
|>>|| No. 8343
Yeah, I can imagine the three-team groups might get a bit predictable. Get seeded in Pot 1 and you're effectively guaranteed a spot in the knockout stages.
|>>|| No. 8344
In what can only be described as a sudden and acute burst of senility, I have entered a sweepstakes at work for the winner and got given Spain at odds of about 15/1. If anyone could tell me if I've just pissed that £1 up the wall entirely that'd be grand, thanks.
|>>|| No. 8346
Barring the first five minutes the French really don't look like they give a shit about trying to win this match. The only way they could appear more nonchalant would be if they occasionally started shrugging and lighting up Gauloises.
|>>|| No. 8347
Spain are one of the favourites, or at least they were until they sacked their manager 2 days before the tournament started.
They have a great chance of winning the whole thing if they can put that behind them as they are more than capable, but no one expects them to win which could take the pressure off them.
Time will tell.
|>>|| No. 8348
>they were until they sacked their manager 2 days before the tournament started.
Fantastic. I'm going to put that down to their fiery and passionate Mediterranean personalities and assume I'm bagging that £25 prize pot. Next round's on me, lads.
|>>|| No. 8349
Pogba's goal might have been the most strangely underwhelming "in off the crossbar" goal I've ever seen. I don't know it was nerves about the VAR or just the general atmosphere of that match, but no one seemed arsed.
|>>|| No. 8351
The 4K stream on iPlayer is a pain in the tits. I know it is still being stress tested, but I was on the second the stream was up so well before the stream would have been full (<100,000 concurrent viewers) and the second half of France vs Australia was still juddery and the audio was out of sync.
They need to sort themselves out. Netflix can stream 4K to a toaster, ffs.
|>>|| No. 8352
It's because it was too soft for a good thwack off the bar.
France were extremely disjointed. If you watched the Spain performance and the France performance and told an unsuspecting person to guess which manager had been there about a week and which one had been there about six years they'd almost certainly guess wrong.
Then again, France are very mercurial when it comes to the Six Nations as well. Must be something in the Frog mentality.
|>>|| No. 8353
Why do they still let Messi take penalties?
|>>|| No. 8355
So ITV commentators can come up with terrible "hand of cod" puns.
|>>|| No. 8356
This Peru side are a lot better than I ever thought. Tiny tricky South Americans
|>>|| No. 8357
I reckon they'll take it if the can beat Kasper, as Denmark don't look like they can break down Peru's defence. Errikson is double marked.
|>>|| No. 8358
Croatia should have won about 5 nil, I think they'll improve as they go on.
|>>|| No. 8359
I think they could beat Argentina, who aren't anything special outside of their attack, so we could see Croatia and Iceland making it out of that group.
|>>|| No. 8361
Argentina, France, Uruguay and Germany have all been underwhelming. Spain will struggle for stability due to changing managers.
It can mean only one thing, lads. Football is actually coming home.
|>>|| No. 8362
I've seen this so much on /sp/ I'm starting to believe it all we need now is for the Swiss to beat Brazil and the prophecy is complete.
|>>|| No. 8363
The way the grouping has turned out this year works a long way in our favour. I think it's still an almost impossibly long shot for us to win, because come on, seriously. But still. It's looking like we'll make it further than we have done in a long while.
|>>|| No. 8364
>The way the grouping has turned out this year works a long way in our favour.
Really? Who's "we" here? Clearly not England, since their third round opponents are almost certainly going to be either Germany or Brazil.
|>>|| No. 8365
Germany looked poor, they've not won in 8 games now. Brazil would be a hard ask, but not an impossible one.
I say this as a Scot with no stake, so I'm not deluding myself. Nothing would chap my arse more than you lot winning another World Cup, but you could. You really could.
|>>|| No. 8366
I watched that Mexico goal on the recap. The final defender fell victim to Lozano's feint, and then he just stood there with his hands in the air while he scored. What the fuck?
|>>|| No. 8367
England won't beat Germany. At best it would be a draw, and we all know how that works out, Southgate more than most.
|>>|| No. 8368
Mate, it's the prophecy. I don't think you understand how prophecies work.
2010 - Pep wins La Liga with Barca. Spain go on to win the World Cup with a squad full of Barca players.
2014 - Pep wins the Bundesliga with Bayern. Germany go on to win the World Cup with a squad full of Bayern players.
2018 - Pep wins the Premier League with Man City. England go on to win the World Cup with a squad full of City players.
It's preordained. You can't argue with it.
|>>|| No. 8370
That was Mesut Ozil, who is decidedly not a defender. I can only assume he thought Lozano was going to hit the ground.
|>>|| No. 8371
>South Korea's coach says he made his players wear different numbered shirts in recent friendlies to confuse opponents who he says cannot tell them apart.
>Only Tottenham forward Son Heung-min and captain Ki Sung-yueng wore their usual shirts against Bolivia and Senegal earlier this month, claimed Shin Tae-yong.
>"We switched them around because we didn't want to show our opponents everything and to try and confuse them," said Tae-yong. "They might know a few of our players but it is very difficult for Westerners to distinguish between Asians and that's why we did that.
I think he realised that he'd missed with his tackle and he was pulling back so he didn't end up fouling him and giving away a penalty. That or it's just Ozil being Ozil.
|>>|| No. 8372
Did you see that ludicrous display last night?
|>>|| No. 8374
Tunisia playing like the dirty swarthy bushy eyebrowed muslemian types they are, more news at ten.
|>>|| No. 8375
It's not great.
Not sure football is coming anywhere near home lads.
|>>|| No. 8378
Well we actually bloody won. I'm not sure what this feeling is, I don't remember the last time I saw England win.
This is a moral victory. England wins world cup in the first round.
|>>|| No. 8382
Homecoming update: Japan beat Colombia. England's path through the knockout rounds slowly being cleared of real threats.
|>>|| No. 8384
Twenty years to the day, I remember being in primary school and our teacher telling us how shameful it was that the previous night English hooligans had smashed up Marseille after winning their match against Tunisia.
|>>|| No. 8385
I thought Poland would be the biggest threat in Group H and they've been dire.
It looks like we're going to actually win a knock out game for the first time since scraping past Ecuador in 2006.
|>>|| No. 8386
I think England could go all they way as long as they can avoid Iceland.
|>>|| No. 8387
The earliest England can face Iceland is the semi-finals.
They'll play either the winner or runner-up from Group H in the last 16 (Poland, Senegal, Colombia or Japan) and in the quarter finals face one of the top two teams from Groups E (Brazil, Switzerland, Costa Rica or Serbia) and F (Germany, Mexico, Sweden or South Korea).
Brazil should top their group and Germany are likely to finish second after losing to Mexico, so these two could meet each other in the last 16. That means it'd be better for England to finish second so they could avoid the victor until the final, although chances are we'd lose to whoever comes out on top between Portugal and Spain in the semis.
|>>|| No. 8389
Do you know what this World Cup is missing? A psychic animal.
|>>|| No. 8391
Croatia and Argentina have enough quality to promise something brilliant, but then a load of shitters who ruin it.
|>>|| No. 8394
Watching Argentina today was like having an out of body experience. Now I understand what it's like to watch England fans suffering.
|>>|| No. 8395
If you look outside their forwards - Messi, Dybala, Aguero, etc. - then they really have a shit squad.
Their first choice keeper, Romero, has spent most of the past five seasons as a bench warmer and Caballero, who was first choice after Romero pulled out, was pretty much in the same position.
Their defenders are players you've largely not heard of or they're shitters like Otamendi. They played a system of three centre backs covered by Mascherano, who is well past his peak and for the third goal he clearly gave up and stood there trying to appeal for offside than actually stop Croatia from scoring.
The rest of their midfield is in a similar position, barring Di María who didn't even get on the pitch yesterday. Players like Lamela didn't even get called up when randomers from the likes of Boca Juniors and River Plate did.
Shit players. Shit manager. Shit system. Messi actually covered less distance in the first round of matches than goalkeepers such as Lloris and Schmeichel.
|>>|| No. 8399
One thing that does concern my about Belgium v England is that Belgium do appear to have players who can pass the ball.
But can they run like a scally wag on a Brit Cops show... we will see.
|>>|| No. 8400
We don't really want to win that game, assuming we beat Panama.
|>>|| No. 8401
This. It's a good job the knockout rounds should be more favourable for us if we finish second.
|>>|| No. 8402
You pair are daft. You can't just throw in the towel for a game like this. If England have to enter the knock outs on the back of a drubbing from Belgium it could be terrible for morale, and what's bad for morale is bad for momentum, and that's hugely important in a WC. What would it say about England if we get smashed by the first big team we encounter? No, no, no, the Belgium game has to be treated like any other.
|>>|| No. 8403
Finishing second normally means a tougher route through the knockout stages, because you end up facing group winners, but right now it's looking like a lot of the big guns are going to miss out on the top spots. That means second place will have us facing the likes of Japan, Mexico and Switzerland instead of Brazil, Germany or Colombia. Playing to a draw will see England through second on goal difference without losing face, so football can come home with dignity.
|>>|| No. 8404
Germany-Sweden has turned into a real nailbiter.
|>>|| No. 8405
I'm really really fucked off they scored that last minute goal.
|>>|| No. 8407
Perchance, did thoust observe that ludicrous expose last night?
|>>|| No. 8410
Even if Belgium utterly embarass England, at least they won't be murderballing and time wasting their way to it.
|>>|| No. 8415
That damned photo doesn't mean a thing. This whole meme has gotten out of hand, he's literally just sitting down and talking with his captain. It's the Miliband eating a bacon sarnie of the WC, with people reading countless things into it without any idea of what they're actually talking about.
|>>|| No. 8417
In that case he's looking a better manager than he is a player right now.
|>>|| No. 8419
Couldn't have happened to a lazier bunch of bottlers.
The Mexican players don't know they're through yet, that will be heart warming.
|>>|| No. 8422
This is the first time since 1966 that England will have progressed further at an international tournament than Germany. Further proof, if it was needed, that football is coming home.
I genuinely can't tell if I'm still taking the piss when I say that or if I'm actually starting to believe it.
|>>|| No. 8423
Every single time Germany were knocked out in the first round they went on to start a World War the year after.
|>>|| No. 8424
>Argentina boss Jorge Sampaoli consulted Lionel Messi about substitutions mid-game as the Albiceleste overcame Nigeria to progress to the last 16 of the World Cup.
>The side were drawing and in need of a goal when an agitated Sampaoli shouted at Messi: ‘Should I bring on Kun?’
>Usually players go out for the second half with their manager’s mid-game team talk still ringing in their ears, but on Tuesday night it was Messi who delivered the speech. Sampaoli was already back in the dugout waiting for the second half to kick off while the rest of the Argentina squad huddled around Messi in the tunnel as he delivered a rousing address.
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