11 June 2012

Game Preview France v England 11-06-12

After the Netherlands game against Denmark it would be tempting to conclude that Denmark's organisation defeated a flair team of superstars and so a relatively poor England team could win the competition.

That may be a mistake.  Denmark were not all that well organised defensively.  There were outstanding performances from the centre halves Agger and Kjær for sure, but The Netherlands were allowed 32 attempts on goal, only 5 of which were on target.  Well organised teams do not allow that many goal attempts.  The fact is that The Netherlands were profligate in front of goal and were made to pay by a team who scored with one of their 8 goal attempts.

Having said that, I think England could get a point from this match.  Roy Hodgson's teams are usually well organised defensively, and England have had quite a few days to be drilled.  Steven Gerrard made light of the expected over 30 degree temperature at yesterday's press conference, but England don't always perform well against strong teams in the heat.

France only scored 1.5 points per match in the qualifiers and only let 4 in.  They also have some significant injury concerns in Diarra, M'Vila and Matuidi, which also points to the draw being a good possibility.

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