Beware the quiet man, he’ll dull

England 2 - 2 Spain - International friendly - Wembley - November 15th, 2016

you into submission.

It, unfortunately, looks like not even England’s clutching of a draw from the jaws of victory against Spain in his final audition will prevent the F.A. hiring Gareth Southgate.

Apparently beating Malta and the Jocks, drawing with Slovenia and Spain, means Southgate has proved he’s up for the job, according to Southgate that is.

But all the players want him. Yes, because they’d be really likely to say the bloke that’s heavy favourite for the job is useless, that would be a great career move. The pundits all want him. That’ll be the same lot that campaigned for the “people’s coach” Keggy Keegle. Yeah, that worked out well.

Hell just think how worse the bandwagon would be if his side hadn’t blown a two goal lead in the dying minutes of the “friendly” against Spain.

According to commentator Clive Tyldesley beating Spain is “a good barometer”. Yeah, because beating previous World Cup winners, Germany and Spain and the Euros champions Portugal over the last year really was an indicator of how glorious this summer would be for England.

If beating Spain is a barometer, coughing up the victory like that is what. Taps barometer repeatedly.

Well at least Southgate had a plan. Counter attack. He knew Spain would have all of the ball and he’d get his team to play on the break. All fine and dandy but to do so you can’t fanny about at the back, you can’t fanny about in the middle and you can’t fanny about up front.

So we had Stones, yet again, fannying about at the back, dropping to the byline and playing others into trouble. If the ball did get forward you had Henderson fannying about like a headless chicken and if it went forward from there you had Sterling, arch fannier, fannying about running into people.

Up until the 89th minute it worked because they got the ball forward quickly twice and Spain were toothless.

First time was an excellent ball from Lallana to Vardy. Vardy was ideal for this role, it’s his game but last season he would have finished the move off, this he’s completely out of touch and almost butchered it. Only for an “uncharacteristic error” from Reina in goal to give away the penalty. Don’t know how many times I’ve heard Reina’s errors called “uncharacteristic”.

Even if he couldn’t score for toffee, he’s certainly more suited than Sturridge. Oh, should that be the team player Sturridge.

Maybe Vardy would be helped by having a player in there that knows his game, Drinkwater unfortunately withdrawing due to injury, but even if he was available he wouldn’t get in ahead of Henderson, even if it would be better for the team.

England manager and favourites, well that usually works a treat.

I’ve read that Southgate’s tactics made Spain change from their initial back three to a back four. Except it was the substitution of the injured Lallana that did this. Spain realising that Walnutt needs no special attention, he didn’t, was he playing?

The second came from another piece of quick countering. For one Sterling looked for someone else and not for personal glory, where he ends up flat on his arse. Henderson actually played a decent ball and even in the form he’s in Vardy couldn’t miss.

All this went on while Spain themselves fannyied about. Usual Spanish stuff, nice passing, no end product. There could have been from just after the hour when Morata was introduced. But every time he was played through with a beautiful ball he was stupidly offside.

They eventually clicked up front. More fannying about from Stones to allow Aspas the shot, if he’s only ever going to kick it with his right why not open up on his right, much more sense than showing him the byline, eh John.

The equaliser came in the dying seconds, Stones goes for a wander, a ball over the top and Isco puts it through the ‘keeper’s legs. Heaton maybe should have don better here, had no chance with the first, but feel sorry for him. Hart had to face nothing while Heaton’s distribution and composure looked better than Hart’s.

Oh and good one Gareth, a friendly, why don’t you give the 34 year old with 39 caps another 45 minutes, far better than putting the kid Keane in.

This, along with playing his favourites, other areas of team and squad selection shows that the name on the door may change – I can’t see the F.A. pulling a rabbit out of the hat now – but it’s a case if meet the new boss, same as the old…

Yup, we wanted, needed Winston Churchill, we’re gonna get Iain Duncan Smith…

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