From the Press box

Nicole Carroll: A one woman mission to make a name in football

Coaching and youth – The way forward for the England setup

with 4 comments

“No pride” “No passion” “Overpaid primadonnas”.

…and that’s just some of the comments that popped up in my news stream after England’s heavy defeat to Germany.

Overreaction was always going to happen when England crashed out of the World Cup, but the fall out from this will be monumental. I already feel the rumblings of a Capello out campaign and a witch hunt of the players. Expect desecrations of each of the group matches, before a blow by blow account of why it all went wrong against Germany.

Except, a lot of these comments are out of order. Who says the players didn’t play with pride? Who says they didn’t play with passion? Losing doesn’t necessarily mean they didn’t try. It’s just the simple fact that we were not good enough against a the German side. A German side which has some fantastic individuals, but can play as a team. In contrast to England who have some fantastic individuals, but can’t play as a team.

Don’t expect things to change anytime soon. The problems England face are much deeper than dressing room rows or simply of player selection during tournaments. The English problem is the fact we truly lack a pool of players to pick from to play for England, and now this Golden generation have proved themselves as gold plated in this World Cup, we will now be looking through a threadbare cupboard for the ingredients for the European Championship qualifiers.

In the short term, England need to rebuild. That is simply the only option. We will need to brush ourselves down and take a long hard look at the squad. There are many people in that squad who are simply too old to turn out at another World Cup, and will be pushing it to feature in the 2012 tournament.

Capello needs to be strong enough to wield the axe. The time for this squad is now over, and we need to spend the next year sourcing the best we’ve got and start nurturing them into England players.

Stop using friendlies as a way of making our form look better. Why beat some unknown country 4-0 with the team we have now, when we could use international friendlies to bed in players who’ve never featured fully in the England squad. Take your Joe Hart and let him build up his England caps. We need a new centre back to replace John Terry who has lost a yard of pace, if not bringing in a raft of young defenders to attempt to take that England shirt. Why not Cahill of Bolton or Johnson at Birmingham? Use Dawson as a future of the defense rather than a benchwarmer and allow him to be surrounded by senior defenders who can only up his game, perhaps in the shape of Ashley Cole who will know all about handling pressure on the big stage.

We need to find and nurture the next generation of midfielders to take England forward. Gerrard and Lampard aren’t getting any younger, now is the time to start resting them for England friendlies and calling up young blood to fill the future roles.

Let’s play these supposed “next best” players in football. Ipswich’s Connor Wickham. If he’s that great, play him in the next England friendly. Lets test how he plays in a good squad, and if he’s good enough, then why not give him a go.

In the short term, we just need to start a squad from scratch which is entirely youth centred, perhaps combined with the smattering of talent we do have. Let them use friendlies and qualifiers to build up a squad slowly, a squad who can learn to compete with other teams with increasingly young squads.

That’s only a short term plan. Tomorrow the FA need to start looking forward to the long term future of English football.

The lack of decent English players needs to be addressed in quite a serious way. Why aren’t our coaching systems producing young players who can compete in the English set up? What can we learn from European coaching schemes, and how can we implement it within our own country.

The short term plan for England is simply a sticking plan which can perhaps take us to the next World Cup. The long term plan could take a decade or so to kick in. We’ll continue into the future lacking success if we fail to address the deeper problems within English football. Tomorrow is the first day for the future of football in this country – FA, please sort it out.


Written by Nicole Carroll

June 27, 2010 at 5:24 pm

4 Responses

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  1. “Who says the players didn’t play with pride? Who says they didn’t play with passion?…”

    Sometimes, seeing is believing, and when you saw there body language on the pitch, giving up a 50-50 contest with 20 minutes still to go, that’s showing no passion, as for pride…no emotion during the national anthem and no emotion at the end of the game, Pearce may get stick for breaking down in Italy 1990, but at least it showed he cared…

    Sam Bourne

    June 27, 2010 at 5:30 pm

    • It wasn’t 50-50 with 20 mins to go though. Disallowed goal or not, we were going to lose this. Defensively inept. No amount of passion is going to make up for a lack of technical skill.

      Nicole Carroll

      June 27, 2010 at 5:33 pm

  2. Alrite Nicolle.

    I cannot agree with comments that ENG were beaten by a better team. That’s not true. When ENG got on top in the game they showed how weak this GERMAN team really was. Tell me how Gerrard and Lampard who score for fun for their clubs and are box to box players cannot do it for ENGLAND. ROONEY’S attitude was disgraceful. He didn’t even try. I’m in shock with what i’ve seen from these players. They are GUTLESS. It takes real men to stand up in the face of adversity and show character and these players who earn a fortune don’t have it. They just don’t have it. I’m not happy about saying that. I wanted em to do well @ this world cup but they have no future in an ENGLAND SHIRT. CAPELLO will have 2 take the blame and no doubt pple will call for his head but it’s the players who are to blame mostly. They didn’t give their all for their country. It was for their country remember. Any1 who couldn’t lift themselves for the sake of their own country, well what more can i say??? Alan Shearer said something about the players not liking the manager! If some1 like Shearer is putting that out there then there has to be some truth in it. If they didn’t like the manager, so what!!! THEY ARE PLAYING FOR ENGLAND, ENGLAND!!! They should be able to put their differences aside but it’s obvious that these players sulked cos they couldn’t get their own way. They should hang their heads in shame. As for Joe Cole, CAPELLO was right not to play him. He was no way near fit. You could see that when he waas brought on the field. The FA have to do something drastic and get to grips with these players now. The players don’t pick the team and John Terry’s behaviour was disgraceful. He shoulda been booted home by CAPELLO and i have a feeling that if FERDINAND hadn’t been injured then TERRY woulda been sent home. If CAPELLO goes then whoever takes over must get rid of the older players straight away and start afresh. There are a lot of good young players in the Prem Lge but ENGLAND need to start producing PLAYMAKERS. The last playmaker was Gazza. It’s not good enuf for ENGLAND not to be producing midfielders who can go past pple or keep the ball and the game ticking over with good possession. I could go on forever but i won’t. As an Irishman i have to say that i was very disappointed with the senior players 2day. They don’t have the stomach for the fight. They are not willing to get down and dirty to win at whatever cost. Where are the Stuart Pearces of the Future???



    June 27, 2010 at 8:19 pm

  3. You know youv played bad when an Irishman says u were rubbish lmao. This was Englands best chance to win the world cup, main players coming into there prime and possibly there last chance to win the cup, and we got beat by a German team apparently set up for the next world cup =O
    Anywhoooo! I think we’ve got a few decent young player comin through, Fabian Delph from Villa, Jack Rodwell from Everton, Jack Wilshire from Arsenal, Frazier Campbell from United, Andy Carroll from Newcastle.
    They just need Interational Exp, isnt tht what friendlies are for??

    Will Fazack

    June 28, 2010 at 10:42 pm

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