England Vs. England

No the title is not a typo. Not that the USA played badly at all, with goalkeeper Howard especially epitomizing the doggedness of the US team, but, really, how many times can a team have an opportunity to score and not quite do it? England says a lot. England says very many.

I am still waiting for Rooney to show me why everyone cares about him. I guess it is just a perspectival trick; I haven't seen any of the international games in which he has scored a goal. It must happen once in a while though.

More thoughts:
The US seems to give the ball up too often. Kicking the ball all the way to the other side of the field for lack of a better option is a bit of a waste at the high school level, and dangerous at the international level. This is the sort of stuff that makes it hard for me to excited. Being so disconnected from soccer, I rarely pick a team a priori to root for but more than sheer dominance or excitement, what draws me to a team is the display of the subtle mix of passion, intelligence, risk-taking and hustle that makes soccer so exciting to watch. The goalie rolling the ball the a defensive player to start a well-orchestrated attack involving ground passes from line to line, from near side to far side culminating in a great cross is exciting while the goalie punting the ball to opposing goalkeeper is not.

As for England, I don't know enough of the mentality of the players to know what advice to offer them. I am, as you can all guess, a bit negative by nature, and I would be disheartened, not energized, by so many near misses, so if I were England, or rather if England were I, I would try and pick my opportunities more carefully for attack and spend more time in the midfield looking for them. Their mileage may vary.

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