For the amusement of Aidan and Lee

Posted on Thu 22 June 2006 in general

Yesterday I thought I was quad booked with popping to the shops to get food for the Wednesday Mealtm, building shelves, attending AM's birthday and watching the match.

As it happened the magic of LJ reminded me that G was cooking a guest spot. AM had wisely decided to go with the flow and double team with the football at the Pitcher and Piano for her birthday. Anne removed the final piece of guilt by profusely apologising for forgetting to bring the power screwdriver back from Bolton. The building of the shelves can wait until next week :-)

Despite the poor final score-line and injuries I was actually quite happy with the England - Sweden game. I was looking forward to see what the Rooney/Owen partnership could bring to the game. Despite Owen being stretchered off in the first few minutes I thought the first half went very well. Our defence was solid (I include plenty of praise for Terry there who greatly impressed me in the last game). Rooney, despite any prejudices I hold against his character from tabloid gossip leakage, did a very creditable job. He really chases down every ball he can which keeps the defenders on their toes. The combination of tenacious strikers with the solid set-ups of our mid-field meant the shots on goal counted for a lot more than they did in the last match. Even one of Beckham's shots was well on target which was an improvement on the last few games.

The second half was a lot more scrappy and I was starting to worry we were going to emulate the cricket team and have a tail-end collapse. As it happened Sweden had more to play for which meant they fought a lot more for the draw once we were ahead. However the general trend is improvement and it is often stated that the most successful England teams struggle for the first few matches before getting to their best performances.

None of this means of course we won't be defeated in the semi-finals by Germany after a penalty shoot out. Still I'm looking forward the England - Ecuador game on Sunday although I don't know if I'll subject my parents to it or listen in the car driving back.