Jump to content

Int'l Friendlies comments (Dutch, Spain, Portugal)

Guest Jeffery S.

Recommended Posts

Guest Jeffery S.

Had a tv treat yesterday and opted not to see Spain on Montjuic, just up the hill from me. So watched three games in a row as the wife was very forthcoming about giving me 5 hours straight in front of the tele.

Saw Holland-US, overlapping at the end with Spain-Peru, overlapping with a tape delay of Portugal-England. Must say that the games were pretty mediocre overall. Biggest surprise was Peru, who played quite well, you can see that they are in the midst of WC qualifying as they came out strong, got a goal, but Spain came back with two quick. Spain was the only team of all I saw who actually controlled the midfield and passed tightly without giving the ball away. Only player I think really shined was Valeron, a delicious player, slight physically but with a lovely touch on the ball.

The States did well to hold Holland, but it was the same old story for the home side: no bite, no drive, no bloodlust. On paper they are so strong and in reality so bland. Makes no sense at all. At least got to see the talent of Arjen Robben, who seems a pretty sure bet to knock Overmaars off the right wing for the Eurocup. The States were too lax in just booting the ball long out of the back, why play senselessly when you have the experience to do more? Beasely had a nice chance near the end. For Landon lovers, well, I think the guy is really not a striker, if he has no room he does little, though I appreciate he does score quite often for the US. It was good of them to give Convey a look, potentially beside Reyna though should be able to come up with a strong midfield in coming years.

Portugal seems like a team that has no team sense at all, added to their traditional lack of scoring punch. They tackle too hard, play individualistly, and seem always close to self-destructing. Players who I saw do so well for them before, like Deco, second half, were invisible. Got to see Petit and Tiago, Aguiar's competitors in the Benfica midfield. The former must have had 8 fouls (and the Benfica fans complain about Fernando being too rough at times), tried useless long shots. I don't think there is a big diff between them. Liked Cristiano Ronaldo's touch on the ball. Ricardo is a great keeper. As for England, given the entire back line were not usual starters and Cole limped off first half, they did okay. Bridge surprised me, I really did not know his play. Beckham was weak, as he has been for Madrid for the last month or so, he has lost a bit of edge lately for club and country. At least England plays as a team and believes in themselves, but what is the point of long high balls to Owen and Rooney, two of the shortest players on the pitch? Another clear error: on the Pauleta free kick they put Rooney in the middle of the wall, and the ball went right over his head and curved into the corner. He barely jumped. Isn't it standard theory that on a wall you put the taller players in the middle and the shorter ones on the outsides, precisely to reduce such scenarios? Exactly what, I sometimes ask, does Eriksson add to the individual talents of England players, what does his coaching provide?

My view is that the only England player who could succeed anywhere, in any league, is Scholes. So I appreciate that Colin Miller voted for him third in FIFA player of the year polling, good taste, only that he was supposed to vote for the best players in the world in 2003. But for me Scholes is England's most complete player.

Link to comment
Share on other sites


This topic is now archived and is closed to further replies.

  • Create New...