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!

Sunday, June 19, 2016

Day 10 - Group A Wraps Up

Happy Father's Day everyone. We've got a real treat on offer this afternoon for the dads among the footballing world. Group A is wrapping up with the top two sides in Group A - France and Switzerland - facing off on ESPN. On the Deuce, you can watch Romania and Albania vying for that best third place team spot. Join me for all the banter here on the LOB.

106 Comments:

Blogger The Blue Devil said...

The team news out of Lille this afternoon:

Switzerland (4-2-3-1) Sommer; Lichtsteiner, Schar, Djourou, Rodriguez; Behrami, Xhaka; Shaqiri, Dzemalli, Mehmedi; Embolo.

France (4-3-3) Lloris; Sagna, Rami, Koscielny, Evra; Sissoko, Cabaye, Pogba; Coman, Gignac, Griezmann.

Referee Damir Skomina

2:45 PM  
Blogger The Blue Devil said...

Deschamps continues his tinkering. Somehow Evra survives despite his useless play during the first two matches. But Sissoko comes in for the ineffectual Matuidi. Pogba is back in the starting eleven but Giroud pays the price of being unpopular with the French crowd. Griezmann leads the line again with Gignac behind him. Payet appears to be rested.

2:47 PM  
Blogger The Blue Devil said...

France will top the group if they get at least a draw. If they achieve that, they will play a third-placed team in the second round rather than the runner-up in Group C (probably Germany or Poland).

2:54 PM  
Blogger The Blue Devil said...

Switzerland will definitely qualify if they draw, and will top the group if they win. They should still go through even if they lose, though they would be dependent on various other results, starting with Romania v Albania.

2:55 PM  
Blogger The Blue Devil said...

Anthems now, starting with Switzerland.

2:56 PM  
Blogger The Blue Devil said...

We're all set for the start now. ESPN will likely update us on the goings on between Romania and Albania in Lyon.

2:59 PM  
Blogger The Blue Devil said...

France about to get us underway, strangely wearing white rather than their traditional blue. The Swiss in red, of course. Not sure why that would clash.

3:00 PM  
Blogger The Blue Devil said...

Decent start to this match. Embolo in particular looks lively for the Swiss.

3:04 PM  
Blogger The Blue Devil said...

The Swiss keep pushing. They know that the reward for a win today against a reduced strength French side is avoiding a date with Germany or Poland in the Round of 16 and against Spain in the quarters.

3:06 PM  
Blogger The Blue Devil said...

Oh - first big chance for France. The ball falls to Pogba after a whiff by Coman and he hits it cleanly but straight at Jurgen Sommer. Well tipped around.

3:14 PM  
Blogger The Blue Devil said...

Oh - off the bar from Pogba - he looks as if he's started with a point to prove today. Great strike!

3:18 PM  
Blogger The Blue Devil said...

Oh - Gignac rises a bit late to meet a Pogba cross, Didn't get anything on it.

3:20 PM  
Blogger The Blue Devil said...

This is probably the best France have played in this tournament. A bit more flow and liveliness.

3:26 PM  
Blogger The Blue Devil said...

Liechtsteiner was close to a booking there, pulling back Coman.

3:27 PM  
Blogger The Blue Devil said...

Switzerland remind us that they're still in this one, Embolo jinking through and firing off a dangerous shot that is blocked out by Koz. It would only take one moment like that to break French hearts.

3:29 PM  
Blogger The Blue Devil said...

This match has settled into the typical pattern of these French matches. I wouldn't be surprised by a 0-0 draw, which would pair France up with a third place team.

3:35 PM  
Blogger The Blue Devil said...

The longer this stays level, the more nervous France will get. They really don’t want to finish second in the group, because if they do they will probably play Germany or Poland in the last 16, and then Spain in the quarters.

3:37 PM  
Blogger The Blue Devil said...

Over on ESPN2 Romania and Albania are also at 0-0, which means that we're all officially goal-starved.

3:39 PM  
Blogger The Blue Devil said...

If these results hold, Romania would still be alive on 2 points from 3 matches and with a -1 GD. But you would expect others to beat their point total. Slovakia and Northern Irelandl already have 3 points and Portugal have 2 points.

3:42 PM  
Blogger The Blue Devil said...

Since I said this was a good game, it’s been rubbish. I sincerely believe this is not a coincidence.

3:43 PM  
Blogger The Blue Devil said...

A fine long pass from Xhaka is miscontrolled by Shaqiri on the right side of the box, allowing Pogba to clear. The game is meandering towards half-time.

3:46 PM  
Blogger The Blue Devil said...

Half time - 0-0 Snooze

A half of two halves comes to an end. France need to be careful, because Switzerland have been useful and they are one goal away from winning the group.

3:59 PM  
Blogger The Blue Devil said...

The Swiss get us started again in the second half.

4:03 PM  
Blogger The Blue Devil said...

Something going on with the Swiss jerseys, three of which were ripped to pieces in the first half.

4:04 PM  
Blogger The Blue Devil said...

A fast start from the Swiss. Shaqiri plays a brilliant lofted reverse pass to find Embolo on the right wing, and his dangerous low cross is backheeled away from trouble by Koscielny in the six-yard box.

4:04 PM  
Blogger The Blue Devil said...

The Swiss win a corner off Cabaye there. Shaquiri to take.

4:04 PM  
Blogger The Blue Devil said...

Rodriguez with a rubbish corner. They really need to make more of these opportunities.

4:08 PM  
Blogger The Blue Devil said...

Gignac pulls the trigger from a wide angle. Smothered by Sommer.

4:09 PM  
Blogger The Blue Devil said...

Switzerland are technically the home side in this game, and they are playing like it: they have had more of the ball, particularly since the break,

4:10 PM  
Blogger The Blue Devil said...

A great tackle by Behrami bursts the ball - crikey!

4:11 PM  
Blogger The Blue Devil said...

Nice move from Griezmann there with a one-two with Pogba but then his shot was at the perfect height for Sommer to beat away.

4:13 PM  
Blogger The Blue Devil said...

Shaqirii takes a tumble but the ref's not having any of it.

4:14 PM  
Blogger manunitedrules said...

Good afternoon, Bob. I'm just back from my trip to Connecticut.

4:17 PM  
Blogger The Blue Devil said...

A lot of the French players losing their footing on this pitch, I don't know why.

4:18 PM  
Blogger The Blue Devil said...

Payet is getting a huge reception, as he steps off the bench. The French need a bit of something special.

4:18 PM  
Blogger manunitedrules said...

It's 0-0 between the French and Swiss while Albania leads Romania 1-0, scoring their first ever goal in a major tournament.

4:18 PM  
Blogger manunitedrules said...

For some reason, the in form Payet did not start, but is on for Kingsley Coman.

4:19 PM  
Blogger The Blue Devil said...

Kingsley Coman come off after a quieter outing today. He and Pogba tend to plow the same furrow.

Payet on for him.

4:20 PM  
Blogger The Blue Devil said...

Shaquiri plants a corner on the top of the net. It seems he was trying to catch Lloris out.

4:20 PM  
Blogger manunitedrules said...

The French had trouble breaking down Albania and Romania in their first two matches and the pattern seems to continue.

4:21 PM  
Blogger The Blue Devil said...

I'm surprised by ESPN's policy but they're clearly trying not to spoil the result of the other match. No updates as of yet.

4:21 PM  
Blogger The Blue Devil said...

Afternoon, MUR - great to hear from you. How was CT?

4:21 PM  
Blogger manunitedrules said...

The Romanian keeper was forced to make a save to prevent Albania going two up.

4:22 PM  
Blogger manunitedrules said...

Thanks Bob. I enjoyed my brief stay in CT, but am glad to be home

4:23 PM  
Blogger The Blue Devil said...

Now it's Sagna who slips as he's trying to cross the ball.

4:23 PM  
Blogger manunitedrules said...

Romania win a free kick about 25 yards from goal

4:24 PM  
Blogger The Blue Devil said...

A win for Albania would knock Romania out but would probably not qualify Albania - I'm not sure that three point will be enough.

4:24 PM  
Blogger manunitedrules said...

The Romanian free kick is into the wall. Albania could go through as one of the four best third placed teams in their tournament debut.

4:25 PM  
Blogger The Blue Devil said...

Happy Father's Day, btw. All the best to you, Elizabeth and the kids.

4:25 PM  
Blogger manunitedrules said...

You may be right . Three points should be enough , but it will probably come down to goal difference. Albania's is -2

4:26 PM  
Blogger The Blue Devil said...

France are playing a dangerous game here, sitting on their 0-0 lead. One goal from Switzerland and they could face Germany in the last 16, and will almost certainly face Spain in the last eight if they get that far.

4:26 PM  
Blogger The Blue Devil said...

Well, two other sides - Slovakia and Northern Ireland already have 3 points, Portugal have 2.

4:27 PM  
Blogger manunitedrules said...

Thanks ,mate. I really appreciate it. It's been a long day , having been up since 4 AM, but this is a good way to spend it, watching the footie.

4:27 PM  
Blogger The Blue Devil said...

I'm sure that England (or any side) would be happy to face Albania in R16.

4:28 PM  
Blogger The Blue Devil said...

Nice one.

4:28 PM  
Blogger manunitedrules said...

France should be a very entertaining team with the players in their squad. They should not be playing for a 0-0 draw.

4:29 PM  
Blogger The Blue Devil said...

Breal Embolo comes off - he started lively but didn't have a sniff for about an hour.

4:30 PM  
Blogger manunitedrules said...

Not sure. I don't think anyone gets an easy match vs Albania. The French will tell you that. Albania really frustrated them and could easily hold England 0-0 and take them to penalties.

4:30 PM  
Blogger The Blue Devil said...

They've been like this in every match, only springing to life in the dying moments of the match.

4:31 PM  
Blogger The Blue Devil said...

Perish the thought.

4:31 PM  
Blogger manunitedrules said...

Great slide tackle on Stancu to preserve Albania's lead.

4:31 PM  
Blogger The Blue Devil said...

Oh - off the bar from Payet!!!

4:31 PM  
Blogger manunitedrules said...

OH!!!! Payet has a volley come off the underside of the bar from a superb run and cross by Sissokho. Why didn't he start?

4:32 PM  
Blogger The Blue Devil said...

Down to about fifteen minutes in these two matches.

4:33 PM  
Blogger The Blue Devil said...

I assume that Deschamps was resting him (and Giroud and Kante) for the R16 match.

4:33 PM  
Blogger manunitedrules said...

Agreed. I expected better from France, unless they will be like the Italians and improve as the tournament progresses. That's what the 1998 team did.

4:33 PM  
Blogger The Blue Devil said...

Another player rested for this match - Blaise Matiudi has come on for Griezmann who was frustrated today.

4:34 PM  
Blogger manunitedrules said...

Matuidi on for Griezmann. I guess Deschamps is content to get a 0-0 result. They can do so much better.

4:34 PM  
Blogger The Blue Devil said...

Now it's Shaqiri coming off and Fernandez come on for the Swiss.

4:35 PM  
Blogger manunitedrules said...

Gelson Fernandes, the ex Citeh player, on for Shaquiri, the current Potter. Kind of like for like.

4:35 PM  
Blogger The Blue Devil said...

One Swiss goal and Deschamps would be down in the dumps.

4:36 PM  
Blogger manunitedrules said...

Payet with a long range pile driver that's not too far off.

4:36 PM  
Blogger manunitedrules said...

Agreed and perhaps deservedly so.

4:36 PM  
Blogger The Blue Devil said...

Gignac has been rather unimpressive up front for France today. He's a statue.

4:37 PM  
Blogger manunitedrules said...

I'm surprised Romania is flat in a must win match. A draw does not help. They need two goals in just over ten minutes and don't look like getting even one.

4:37 PM  
Blogger manunitedrules said...

He must be . I didn't even know that he was playing.

4:38 PM  
Blogger manunitedrules said...

Stnacu well over for Roamnia after they won the ball on the high press.

4:39 PM  
Blogger manunitedrules said...

Kos booked for a naughty challenge., the free kick from Rodriguez is headed away

4:40 PM  
Blogger manunitedrules said...

Albanian fans are going bonkers. They've never experienced anything like this.

4:40 PM  
Blogger manunitedrules said...

Cana fouls Stancu just outside the D

4:41 PM  
Blogger manunitedrules said...

Michael Lang on for Mehmedi. while the free kick seems to be taking forever.

4:42 PM  
Blogger The Blue Devil said...

Now Payet has a decent free kick chance. This is his range.

4:43 PM  
Blogger manunitedrules said...

The free kick is straight into the wall, blocked by Cana and Albania counter. Roshi wins a corner on the counter and their fans cheer them on.

4:43 PM  
Blogger The Blue Devil said...

Into the wall and out for a corner. Disappointing. No - it hit Pogba.

4:44 PM  
Blogger manunitedrules said...

OH!!!MvaraI heads inches wide from the corner as that could have been 2-0. Albania now have a shot blocked for a corner,.

4:44 PM  
Blogger manunitedrules said...

The corner is headed wide.

4:45 PM  
Blogger manunitedrules said...

Romanaia look to be heading out. Their only goals have been two penalties by Stancu. Unless they are gifted a late penalty , I don;t see them scoring.

4:46 PM  
Blogger The Blue Devil said...

I agree with Jon Champion and Stewart Robson - there is nothing in this display to convince me that France are likely champions.

4:46 PM  
Blogger manunitedrules said...

Two minutes of stoppage time between France and the Swiss. Memusaj booked for time wasting for Albania.

4:47 PM  
Blogger manunitedrules said...

I tend to concur.

4:47 PM  
Blogger manunitedrules said...

Five minutes of stoppage time in the ALbania vs Romanaia match

4:48 PM  
Blogger The Blue Devil said...

The Swiss are shouting for a penalty for some shirt tugging by Sagna. Might have been!

4:48 PM  
Blogger manunitedrules said...

Memusaij wins a corner for Albania.

4:48 PM  
Blogger The Blue Devil said...

It's all over here in Lille - a really drab 0-0. The Swiss celebrate going through second. And I'm over to the other match.

4:49 PM  
Blogger manunitedrules said...

It finishes 0-0 between France and the Swiss. The Swiss are celebrating as if they won the whole tournament.

4:49 PM  
Blogger The Blue Devil said...

Albania have a free kick chance here late on. Headed toward goal by my Red Card boy Lorik Cana.

4:50 PM  
Blogger manunitedrules said...

Now Albania have a free kick. Cana heads the free kick straight to the keeper.

4:50 PM  
Blogger manunitedrules said...

Torje booked for a stupid foul that runs more time off the clock.

4:50 PM  
Blogger The Blue Devil said...

Oh dear - what on earth was that pass?

4:51 PM  
Blogger manunitedrules said...

Hysaj booked for time wasting for ALbania.

4:51 PM  
Blogger The Blue Devil said...

Rubbish shot from Stancu and that should be that.

4:52 PM  
Blogger manunitedrules said...

Stancu with a pathetic long range effort and that should about do it for a disappointing Romanian side.

4:52 PM  
Blogger The Blue Devil said...

That's that - Albania score their first ever win at a major tournament. They still have a chance of qualifying. Romania are out.

4:54 PM  
Blogger The Blue Devil said...

I'm off to do the weekly food shopping run, mate. Nice chatting with you.

4:54 PM  
Blogger manunitedrules said...

Babusaj wins a late corner for Albania , which should run out the clock. it does as Albania record their first ever win IN a major tournament , defeating Romania 1-0. Romanaia is out. Albania will need to wait and see if they qualify for the knockout stages , but can take a great deal of credit for their performances.

4:55 PM  
Blogger manunitedrules said...

Cheers mate. It was great chatting with you. Enjoy.

4:55 PM  

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