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[Archived] England V Wales Wc Qualifier Preview


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This Saturday sees Englands third attempt to lose to a smaller footballing nation in pursuit of another quarter final exit in a major championship.

I know its not BRFC related as such, but with our manager being in charge of the visitors to OT, I thought I would run something up the flagpole, see if anyone salutes. That and the fact that my Boro preview is behind schedule and I felt I ought to put something out.

On the face of it England should be mega favourites to win. Rooney back and scoring, Campbell and Rio back in place of the awful Terry and King and Michael Owen being injured all add upto a walloping for Taffs.

But England being England, and Wales being Wales, you can be sure it wont go to plan.

In Hartson, Giggs, Bellamy and errr, Lee Trundle they have got Champions league level players and under the guidance of Mark `The Leek` Hughes I fancy the home side (England) will have a proper scrap on their hands.

It takes me back to the Good Old Days of the Home Internationals when thousands of British football fans would take each other on at dart throwing, goalpost smashing and general hand to hand combat set against a backdrop of 90 minutes pointless football.

For England, there is no real Rovers interest, aside from the boss who nearly left Rome for Rossendale but changed his mind after some one told him the ski slope wasn`t real. The last Rovers player to play for England was David `£5.5M? You`ve Been` Dunn, as a sub in some useless friendly or other. After that your talking Sutton, Ripley, Le Saux etc. And Shearer.

Flowers as well. Oh yeh and Batty. And Sherwood .Anyway nobody from recent times.

Mike England played for Wales.

The Welsh team has obviously got the same boss as us, that`s a big interest. How will he be able to stop thinking about his problems at Rovers for long enough to work out his plans for the English? Does he need any help? Will Jansen get a game for the Welsh? At right back?

Recent Rovers interest in the Welsh side include Nathan Blake, erm Chris `Coalman Hair`Coleman, and the other one.

Always an honourable and proud man, no doubt Hughes will be going all out for victory, with the game being played at his old stomping ground(literally). I wonder if Wales win the two games he has left, wether the WFA will perform volte face and ask him to carry on in both jobs?

Personally speaking, I would like to see a narrow England win, with Hughes showing some brilliant tactical awareness and first rate man-management skills along the way. And no shenanagins on the building site that Old Trafford is i.e. crowd trouble. I fear there is a real chance there may be.

So national pride overcomes personal pride and the desire for reflected glory that the Welsh win would bring.

2-1 Rovers.

I mean England.

Boro preview along shortly..

Edited by ozziejones
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England to thrash Wales at least as soundly as the Italians did: 4-0.

Hughes to rescue his Welsh swansong with a sterling performance from the boyos midweek but to return to a huge Rovers crisis as Emerton gets cropped in Samoa and MGP bumps into Ferguson in Glasgow.

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With Wayne Bridge, Steven Gerrard and Michael Owen out it's going to be an interesting team selection.

I'm guessing we'll probably line-up like this:


Neville Campbell Ferdinand A. Cole

Beckham Lampard Butt J. Cole

Defoe Rooney

Personally I'd play Hargreaves ahead of Butt but I don't think Eriksson will do that. I think we'll win this one, it will be a tough game but I think we've got too much for Wales to handle.


The squad doesn't seem to have been mentioned anywhere so I'll stick it here:

Goalkeepers: David James (Manchester City), Paul Robinson (Tottenham Hotspur), Robert Green (Norwich City).

Defenders: John Terry (Chelsea), Rio Ferdinand (Manchester United), Ledley King (Tottenham Hotspur), Sol Campbell (Arsenal), Ashley Cole (Arsenal), Gary Neville (Manchester United), Phil Neville (Manchester United), Wayne Bridge (Chelsea)*

Midfielders: Jamie Carragher (Liverpool), Nicky Butt (Newcastle United), Owen Hargreaves (Bayern Munich, Germany), Joe Cole (Chelsea), Frank Lampard (Chelsea), Jermaine Jenas (Newcastle United), David Beckham (Real Madrid, Spain), Sean Wright Phillips (Manchester City),

Forwards: Wayne Rooney (Manchester United), Alan Smith (Manchester United), Michael Owen (Real Madrid, Spain)*, Jermain Defoe (Tottenham Hotspur), Darius Vassell (Aston Villa).


Edited by LeChuck
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Good preview Ozzie.

A few grey hairs have recently started to appear on the head of Ryan Giggs - an indication perhaps that the United winger will soon be reaching mature 'veteran' status in the game.

Giggs will be 31 later this year, and the match on Saturday will be the first time he has come up against Gary Neville and David Beckham in a competitive match.

It's 20 years since Wales played England. Mark Hughes has fond memories of the last encounter in 1984.

Sparky scored the only goal of the game on his International debut. To make it even more memorable for him, the match was played in his home town of Wrexham.

The following year Hughes was named PFA Young Player of the Year, and he won an FA Cup winners medal when United beat Everton 1-0, preventing the blue half of Merseyside from doing the treble that year.

Hughes is confident that Giggs will be desperate to do well in Saturday's match at Old Trafford. It's been a big desire of Ryan to play for Wales in the finals of a major tournament - but I suspect he won't achieve his aim before his career ends.

Giggs came close to playing in Euro 2004, losing to Russia in a play-off, but that will probably be the closest that he'll get.

Realistically, he's unlikely to go beyond Euro 2008, and he might in fact decide to hang up his Welsh boots after the current World Cup campaign.

The last time that England hosted Wales was in 1983 at Wembley, with England coming back from behind to win the match 2-1.

Ian Rush gave Wales the lead, but Terry Butcher equalised with a header. Late in the second half, Gordon Cowans was brought down in the Welsh penalty area and Phil Neal sealed victory with a penalty.

It's probably fair to say that our current team now is better than the one that lined up in 1983, especially as our two best players back then - Bryan Robson and Glenn Hoddle - were both missing from the match.

The actual team, which included the much maligned Luther Blisset in attack - the 1980's equivalent of Emile Heskey - lined up as follows:

Peter Shilton

Phil Neal Terry Butcher Alvin Martin Derek Statham

Alan Devonshire Sammy Lee Gary Mabbut Gordon Cowans

Luther Blisset Paul Mariner

It will be interesting to see Sparky's tactics for the match.

Will he get men behind the ball, closing down space and playing on the counter-attack, or will he urge his flair players like Bellamy and Giggs to go forward and attack from the start?

For England, Rooney will probably start the match alongside Jermain Defoe - if Michael Owen is indeed unfit to play.

I don't think it will be a thrashing for England, but hopefully we should be able to win the game without too much difficulty.

My prediction: England 2 Wales 0

Edited by Anti Euro Smiths Fan
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That brings back memories AESF!

Will be watching this one to see if Hughes can inspire the Welsh squad more effectively than he has been doing in the last six games or so.

Sticking with England thrashing them but for the Welsh to get a surprisee result against Poland.

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England to thrash Wales at least as soundly as the Italians did: 4-0.

Hughes to rescue his Welsh swansong with a sterling performance from the boyos midweek but to return to a huge Rovers crisis as Emerton gets cropped in Samoa and MGP bumps into Ferguson in Glasgow.

Bloody hell philipl, nothing like optimism is there?

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Where has Wales gone.

A bureaucratic blunder has left Wales off a map of Europe on the cover of a prestigious EU reference book.

Wales has disappeared.


England: Be afraid, be very afraid.

This confirms the rumours I have heard from the scientific underground: Wales have perfected a technology similar to the 'cloaking' technology you may have seen in Star Trek.

The fact that they temporarily made their entire nation invisible demonstrates its power and the fact they are not afraid to use it.

Anybody read about the Invisible Striker in Viz comics? I suspect you're about to see (or rather not see) the real thing when they use their cloaking technology on John Hartson, so that he escape his markers despite his leaden-footedness and poke the ball in to the net unchallenged.

We Scots use a similar technology which renders each and every one of our players completely useless, thus lulling the opposition into a false sense of security. Only problem is, this sense of security usually proves not to be so 'false'

Edited by millionpints
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Just been looking at the official site which was telling people to buy their tickets for U21's sooner rather than later so I phoned the ticket office to see whether i should buy my tickets before the day of the game, incase they all go. The girl on the phone said "well we have sold...(WAIT FOR IT)....11,000 so i don't think we'll sell out" !!

Poor turnout it seems...

Edited by Ben-2000
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