By Obiweluozo Martins
The English side has lost to one of the most motivated and lowly rated sides in the competition in an Iceland.
It was a game on a normal day England should win, but due to some constraint are heading back to London with all hope quashed for another two years. For Iceland they are appearing in their first major tournament in history and have achieved the unbelievable milestone halting a titanic clash between the host Frances and defeating England to set themselves up to the quarter final stages among elite nations like Belgium, Italy, Germany and dark horse Wales. For sure they will fancy their chances once more against France as we take a look at critical point from this England vs. Iceland game.
Iceland Barcelona Moment
|Hart looks back in hope that the ball does not land in his net while England’s defenders watch on from inside the penalty box.|
The English side started brightly with Rooney breaking through from midfield sending a ball into the box which Raheem sterling pursued and was carelessly harked down for a penalty which Rooney duly commented to give England the early lead Iceland struck by immediately through a loose ball in defence for the equalizer but that was not all the Iceland team had for England in puzzle.
Soon came the winning goal for Iceland what a goal it was as England lost ball in midfield, Iceland attacking players broke loose with all the flair they got in their bone marrow to disorganize the English defence with quick one to two movement with exceptional touches and precise passing that left Chelsea Gary Cahill on ground sweeping the green surface and Chris Smalling as confused as ever with Eric Dier ball watching as helpless Joe Hart saw the ball rolling into the net with little to do to stop it with his despite his fingertips.
Such was how good Iceland was leaving Joe Hart like an amateur on the ground despite his experience at International level. It was a moment of Barcelona as Chelsea Cahill and co was left to chase the game all through the 20 minutes of play.
Rooney Has No Business In Midfield
|From left to right Alli, Chris Smalling and (Rooney) look dejected after seeing their side go 2-1 down at the Stade de Nice.|
Rooney might have scored once again at least from the penalty’s pot against Iceland and continued a good run in front of goal against Iceland as he did in June 2004 coming a brace on that date but the reality is that Rooney was in extinction as far the game was concerned.
The talismanic captain must make rooms for young talented midfield players like Ross Barkley, Dele Alli and Jack Wilshire to find expression in the three Lions attack and midfield position. There was not in contribution from Wayne Rooney and the Manchester United was guilty of losing possession in midfield along with Eric Dier Rooney must join the attack so that Alli can play behind his Tottenham team mates just as Ross Barkley need to be integrated in the attacking areas rather than being left to rot on the England bench.
England Joins Jinx List
The three Lions was never lacking in talent or quality as players like Rooney, Alli, Cahill, Smidge and Kane are consistent performers at club level, so it was never more of an average player, thing or lack of quality, it just got to do that the English players failed to come to the party.
The Iceland team had there moment with long passes and quick transition play coupled with across field pass from deep zone in midfield in the second half but still England could just beat Iceland who were lacking in International experience at competitive level. It was just a case of been jinx as the English side have not gone beyond the quarter finals of a major tournament just like Benfica may never win the EUROPA LEAGUE.
Teams like Ivory Coast and Spain have broken from perennial under achieve but it is left to be seen if England will recover from their recent doldrums and stake a claim to a trophy at major tournament as they deserved.