Jordan Henderson featured in England’s 1-1 draw with Spain in their opening match in the European Championships.
I thought he had a solid game and did well when of course he and his England colleagues managed to get the ball off the Spaniard’s, which, lets face it, wasn’t often! Perhaps that’s not being fair he and his colleagues, for the Spaniard’s probing, managed an equaliser althuogh many, considering Spain’s dominance, would argue it was not necessarily a just reward? Nonetheless perhaps it was an indication that there is more than one way than just “death by a thousand passes” to ensure you get a result?
Spain are World and European Champions at international and club level and in this evidence you can see that this might not a flash in the pan? Their under-21 performance suggested that such dominance could be maintained? Still England worked hard to keep them down to one goal which is poignant given club manager’s recent worries about their young players getting burnt out.
I’m not always sympathetic such complaints. In comparison to other less glamorous but more important professions, none as well paid, professional footballers have it easy. They have plenty of rest time and have the best facilities and advice to recover from the rigors of a game. Perhaps I’m being old fashioned, or missing the point, I often wonder what a nurse or a miner (assuming this country still has any left) or a steel worker feels when they hear managers complain about players being tired or brunt out? Speaking yesterday Jordan Henderson also suggested that the notion of young players such as Jack Wilshire being, in their manager’s eyes at least, delicate little trinkets that should be wrapped in cotton wool is a tad exaggerated.
“I know there are managers and players worried about burnout and playing too much, but I feel fine. Yes I’ve played a lot, but I’ve still got lots to give, still got energy. We are young and want to play football and can achieve something special for our country”
Elsewhere and the rumour mill grinds on. Clichy, Downing, Wickham, Adam, Enrique and God knows who else however, in order to get these players in some will have to move out. Getting rid is not as easy as it might seem. Such an example is Milan Javanivoic who by anyone’s standards hasn’t really set Anfield alight since his move however, he appears to be digging his heals in re a move. A strong desire to stay a red and prove himself for another season? I would hope so however cynics might also point to the reported £100k wages a week he is trousering!
I guess the same goes for Joe Cole (but add another £20k) who was spitefully featured in a Guardian article yesterday called “Europe’s unwanted Transfer window”
I am more inclined to give Cole another chance but admit this is ignorance on my part, I’ve seen more of Cole than I have of Javanivoic. However, Fenway have been more than honest about cutting the wage bill and Cole it would seem, along with the likes of Paul Konchesky, and Christian Poulsen, is a prize candidate to go? No doubt there will be others – hell we’ve even still Philipp Degen on the payroll! The “problem” is who will have the likes of Cole and Javanivoic if they demand the same salary? Leaving aside professional pride why should they move and take a cut when are on such good money? On this basis I guess if Cole and Javanivoic stay and warm the bench whilst watching their bank accounts rise, we only have ourselves to blame?
Meanwhile the tiresome saga of Alberto Aquilani rolls on. Once again we appear to have backed ourselves into a corner on this one. Having paid far too for him we are now facing the prospect of taking a loss on him as he neither wants to return to England nor will command the £20m we paid Roma for him in 2009. Although we displayed patience with his injury problems I believe we shot ourselves in the foot by letting him go on loan to Juventus at the beginning of last season. Why Roy Hodgson did this, given all the effort we’d put in to get him fit, is beyond me. We also had a midfield woefully sort of the sort creativity a fit Aquilani could provide – perhaps he though Joe Cole could fill the gap?
I wonder what Aquilani’s attitude to staying would be if he was not on loan and playing under Kenny? I feel sure Dalglish would have given him more room and opportunity to express himself but sadly it is any wonder Aquilani wants to stay at home when exposed to Hodgson’s apparent lack of confidence?
Finally, amidst all this doom and gloom is nice to end on a note of optimism, step forward Luis Suarez
“We’ve been playing well and I think we’ve been getting into the type of form that we know we’ll have to keep up for a whole season if we want to be title contenders. This is something we’re optimistic about for next season and if we can hit the ground running and maintain the good form then I think we’ve got a good chance of doing well.”
I like this man more and more!