Just A Blip In The Road For England


England’s emphatic victory over Iran on 21 November already seems like a distant memory after Gareth Southgate’s men limped to a tame draw with the United States on Friday night. 

In a performance not becoming World Cup champions-elect, the Three Lions created very little against their great allies and had to rely on a solid defensive shift to take a point.


Chances Missed

Harry Kane and Mason Mount had the best chances for England, whereas Chelsea’s Christian Pulisic hit the crossbar. 

Winston McKennie had blazed a good chance over the bar, too, and it looked like the Americans were more likely to score in the game. 

England have never beaten the United States at the World Cup, losing one and drawing two of their three games against them - an embarrassing statistic considering the sport’s relative lack of popularity in North America. 

The country that created the sport has won just one major trophy in its 150-year lifespan and seems unable to dispatch its transatlantic neighbor in football’s premier competition. If you ask me, that is nothing short of embarrassing. 

Ronaldo A Premier League Icon

Ronaldo A Premier League Icon

Anonymous Performances 

Harry Kane looked a shell of the player who has been on red-hot league form this year, whilst Raheem Sterling and Bukayo Saka delivered performances that were nothing short of anonymous. What’s going on?

If you ask me, the pressure of being the 2022 World Cup favourites is starting to get to Southgate’s warriors, and thoughts of their inevitable victory seem more real than ever. If that’s the case, then I am happy to overlook the turgid performance against the Americans and chalk it up to nerves. Southgate, however, must make sure his team is in rip roaring form against Wales on Tuesday. 

Southgate Comments

Speaking of the performance, the England manager said:’’ I'm really pleased with how the players have applied themselves. Some of our quality in the final third could have been a little bit better but we've shown great resilience to defend against an opponent that kept asking questions.’’ 

He added: ‘’ We controlled the game from the back but couldn't really open up for that really clear-cut chance.’’

Critics were quick to point out Phil Foden’s absence from the game, as they believed the Man City star possesses the quality and flair to unlock airtight defences. Though the USA aren’t nearly as good as us at football, they deserve credit for their attitude and application against one of the world’s best teams. 

Though I was disappointed with England’s performance against the USA, I remain confident it was just a blip in the road. Football is still coming home, however, it may be delayed a little. 


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V: 1.22.0 All rights reserved. August 2021