This Is Decadence – Germany 4 England 1

England’s adventures at recent World Cup’s have held a familiar and frustrating repetition.

If the Three Lions story was shown at your local multiplex, the trailer would be read by the American voice-over artist with the gruff voice – who insists on replacing autumn with fall – and the film would carry the tag line “the biggest hard luck story of the summer”.

This much repeated tale though has clearly become tiresome to the squad of 2010, as apart from one Frank Lampard effort that was missed by the partially sighted linesman, England have little reason to feel hard done by this time around.

There was no penalty shoot-out defeat. There was no spirited display that embodied the passion associated with previous English performances and there was certainly no organisation or determination.

In fact there was very little of note, apart from the result being the worst inflicted on England at a World Cup finals.

Earlier draws against USA and Algeria in the group stage, were as much unexpected as they were unwelcome, but the results were accepted as merely a tentative start before the real England revealed itself, but to lose to Germany in the manner in which England did was truly decadent.

Not that Germany are on quite such a lowly par with any of the inhabitants of group C, indeed far from it, as they showed great creativity from the likes of Mezut Ozil and Bastian Schweinsteiger, as well as organisation and perhaps above all, a calmness on the ball and a willingness to keep possession over a Steven Gerrard comic-book hero pass or wasteful effort on goal.

Long balls over the top repeatedly confused the defensive pairing of Barry and Paul Chuckle, as they avoided the attentions of any Germans heading towards goal and were found wondering into positions they had no right to be in (familiar territory for Terry).

Steven Gerrard had clearly been reading Roy of the Rovers before kick-off as he insisted on repeatedly shooting wildly and attempting long raking cross-field balls that did nothing but keep the ball-boys busy and Wayne Rooney was again buried by the weight of expectation, as he failed to notch his first tournament goal.

To confine the criticism to these players alone is unfair, as no particular player was any worse or better than any other, in a match that squarely belonged to the Germans.

However, once again England’s renowned and revered players failed to repeat the form they display for their club sides in what has become an inexplicable and annoying feature of major tournaments.

Even if the partially sighted linesman had seen Lampard’s effort cross the line it would have little effect on the final result and it would take a similarly short sighted fan to disagree, as the scoreline humbled a side that were comfortably beaten by a German team that never panicked or lost control of the game and continually created chances.

Gary Lineker has said “football is a very simple game. For 90 minutes 22 men go running after the ball – and at the end the Germans win” and he was right.

Never though has so little application and complete lack of organisation, understanding and aggression been shown by some many to contribute towards Gary’s prophecy though.

Tags: England, World Cup 2010

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