Lakenheath Old Boys

We are all former students at Lakenheath High School and other public schools in East Anglia. We were in school in the 70s and 80s and drank deeply from the well of British culture of those decades - the pints, the telly, and of course the footie!

Thursday, May 26, 2016

Euro 2016 Preview - Group B: England!

Group B, then. Top seed in the group is (gulp) England:

Nickname: "The Three Lions"

Absurd FIFA ranking: 10th

Coach: Roy Hodgson

Match Schedule: 

June 11 - England v. Russia (Marseille, 3pm EST, ESPN)
June 16 - England v. Wales (Lens, 9am, ESPN)
June 20 - England v. Slovakia (St. Etienne, 3pm, ESPN)

Prospects: England sailed through qualification for France 2016, winning all ten matches and setting UEFA along the way. Yet, they have failed to make an impact at major tournament before after having had stellar qualification rounds, so expectations are still rather cautious. After superb seasons, Roy Hodgson will likely rely heavily on the rosters of Leicester City and Spurs. This will mean starting XI that may be one of the youngest in the competition. A big question centers on the role of current captain Wayne Rooney, who had an indifferent season for United but remains England all-time top scorer. It's hard to see Hodgson leaving him out, but Rooney has frequently disappointed at the big events in the past.

Key Player: Chelsea center half Gary Cahill will have to anchor the defense for England, alongside Chris Smalling who has real weaknesses when it comes to marking the best strikers. Cahill is also a real threat at set pieces.

Youngster to Watch: 20 year old Spurs playmaker Dele Alli may just keep Wayne Rooney out of the side. He could make the England attack hum.

Who Will Get the Goals: Premiership top scorer this season - Harry Kane.

Who Will Get the Cards: Rooney has previous at big tournaments.

Prediction: Top of Group B, which will produce a decent match up with a third-placed team, possibly Poland in the Round of 16. As they've done in many tournaments England will go out - possibly on a dreaded penalty shoot-out - to the first big side they meet. In this case, that should be Italy in the Quarterfinals.


Blogger manunitedrules said...

It's tough to predict. England should win the group, but the other teams are good enough to finish ahead of them in case the Three Lions do not play to their full potential. I am thinking the Ukraine as a possible third placed opponent instead of Poland even though it could be third placed team from two other groups. I am thinking that England could face Belgium instead of of the unpredictable Italians in the quarters. I do see England losing in the dreaded shootout in the quarters. Kane should get the goals and Della Alli is a young player to watch. He could get the cards instead of Roon. The keys are weather the defense is good enough to handle the forwards from the top teams.

11:26 AM  

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