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England 1 Ecuador 0


philipl
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I didn't get round to writing any of the previews I said I would do so I am writing one I didn't promise. I am also going to hit Post New Topic now so I don't lose what I have written again. The rest will appear in edit mode. :P to the new message board!

OK its now on the site.

Ecuador is just about my favourite place on earth. Never mind, the raging incompetence, corruption, population growth (two women to a bed giving birth-think about it), road deaths (don't try Guayaquil to Quito by road although the wonderful raliway is sadly a truncated apology now), Ecuador is simply the most diverse place on earth in a space smaller than England. In fact nobody knows quite how small Ecuador is as nobody knows where the Peruvian border is and the last soldiers died at Peruvian hands trying to find out as recently as 2004.

Ecuador is Latin America on steroids (or at least chewed coca) and then some more. The people are universally friendly although blue-eyed blond Germanic youths with uber Germanic names speaking the local hispanic are a hint of where the Third Reich went. Only the Swiss working class retirees are a pain. The locals engagingly wander the markets with wadges of notes held losely above their heads to proclaim their willingness to buy the wonders of the volcanic soil in the local markets irrespective of the Sucre being replaced by the US dollar. Guayaquil and Lagro are best avoided and the bit of Quito under the statue of Christ is dodgy at night but I'd wander the streets of Quito and most Ecuadorian towns and cities before volunteering for walking large chunks of Paris or Liverpool.

Ecuador is Spanish for Equator and it sits smack on it. The Mitta del Monde (middle of the World) is 25km north of Quito where French scientists famously cast the metre rod which is held at 0C in Paris and is the root from which all the metric system originates. Sitting in 100F heat in Valletta, I yearn for the all year round 83F of Quito. Yes, its at 9,000ft but I found the altitude very handleable. I drove up to just under 15,000ft in the pass over to the Occidente and having achieved the highest altitude I am ever likely to, it was a stunning experience for the cloud to part revealing the smoking summit of Antisanna half way up the sky towering another 6,000 ft above.

Twenty active volcanoes exceed 20,000ft including Cotopaxi, the World's highest volcano (for climbers the challenge is to make the summit at dawn and be in a plush Quito restaurant for lunch) and Chimborrazo- for a century considered the highest peak in the world and the summit remains the furthest point from the centre of the earth because of the centrafugal effect of the world's spin. The avenue of volcanoes- a vast plateau at twelve thousand feet 250 miles long is an awesome place.

Yet in this tiny place is a Pacific Equatorial Coast the equal of any for beaches, dramatic headlands and stunning coastal mangoves and an appreciable chunk of Amazona on the Nappa River not forgetting the awe-inspiring 600ft Sao Francesco Falls. The wildlife diversity is stunning.

Talking of which, the Galapagos Islands are part of Ecuador. Believe me if you haven't swum with Penguins circling your head and and sea lions bobbing up to look at you, you've never swum- and I am a weak swimmer. They tell you not to to touch the wildlife, the wildlife cannot read so it touches you! I had a sea lioness sit on my feet and more birds land on me than I care to remember. If a Booby walks towards you, you move out of the way or risk a bit of a peck which given they are 2ft 6ins tall is not advisable. Albatross, Hawks, Frigates, Pelicans, Flamingos, Turtles, Tortoises, Iguanas (land or marine), Finches, Sting Rays, White Tipped Sharks- came within 6ft of all of them. Unforgettable.

But the greatest impression left on me is the extraordinary achievement that is the colonial centre of Quito. Spanish perfection in a way that nowhere in Spain is, this vast area from the Presidential Palace south to the statue of Christ is a masterpiece of 16th and 17th Century Spanish colonial building. Within it is a gem of a Church unequaled with anything I have seen in the World. La Compagna (the Jesuit Church) is not just stunning for an array of gold to rival St Mark's in Venice but I have never seen an interior of a building achieve such a stunningly heavenly fusion of colours, of symbols (pre-Inca and Inca design is as prominent as Christian) or painting anywhere.

Ecuador also has a football team. If SGE has the sense to double upon their right winger England should win.

The Ecuador defence:

IPB Image

Edited by philipl
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Ecuador are a much better side than Paraguay which England were frankly lucky to beat. Germany (who are no better than OK) are swatting aside a Sweden side England struggled against.

I think it is going to be finger nail chewing, elbow sucking, toes fingers and knees crossed etc etc but I'll be amazed if England don't squeak through utterly unconvincingly.

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Really enjoyed the preview philip. Thanks.

My prediction was for England to go out at this stage. Based on their play to date they will lose, based on the luck factor, for want of a better word, they will squeeze through with another unimaginative, boring display. We have players who can win games and against Ecuador it's likely one or two of them will produce a couple of magical moments to get us through. Exciting isn't it? Revidge suggests SGE is starting to look lucky, I agree. With the talent available he should get lucky.

I shall be watching The Zutons and then The Who ~ they may not be around again, England probably will.

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Nice preview. I want to visit there now. I didn't realise you were a travel agent, Philip!

Maybe Owen's departure will be a blessing in disguise as we'll be able to operate with a holding midfielder giving Stevie G and Lamps the licence they need.

Don't kow why there's rumours of Carrick stepping in, though. I'd have thought Hargreaves would get the nod. I know that Carrick's a better footballer, but is he the better defender?

A win for Engerland nonetheless.

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Ecuador 2-1, after going in at halftime 1-0 down. England will tire late in the second half leading to 2 quick fire goals from Ecuador from the wings

now thers a surprise ....;)

5-0 england!!!!!!!

rooney 3

terry

rio

av it

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Englands problem as ever, apart from the usual one(SGE ) is the same as has been for Liverpool, Man Utd and now Chelsea. That is to say noone likes us, and everyone wants to beat us. Every game England play is like a Cup Final for the opposition, they put in 'an obscene amount of effort' . The ROTW hate England, the obnoxious thug fans, the arrogant press and the overpaid players. Beating England in any game is an end in itself.

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3-0 England.

England fans to run riot regardless.

Wherever you are in the world,if you're English then it's your fault,you bloody thugs.

And Wayne Rooney is a thug.

:unsure:B)

Everything was going fine until that Rooney poster was published . I blame the gutter tabloid press ... :ph34r:

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