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 England make a big win against Croatia

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Shinnawy
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PostSubject: England make a big win against Croatia   Thu Sep 11, 2008 3:44 am

Croatia 1 England 4


SAY it loud, say it proud - England are back.

Fabio Capello is leading the country out of the dark ages and we are on course for the 2010 World Cup finals.

This was the best England performance since the 5-1 victory over Germany in Munich seven years ago.


And it was led by hat-trick hero Theo Walcott, the Arsenal youngster who is the standard bearer for the new era.

Walcott, 19, gave Croatia a right kick in the Balkans as they lost their first-ever competitive game here in Zagreb.

There was also a goal for the impressive Wayne Rooney — who answered a growing army of critics — while England had heroes all over the pitch.

Emile Heskey was a barnstorming leader of the line, ably backed up by an energetic midfield and a rock-solid defence.

Croatia have won so many friends over the years for their skilful and competitive approach but Slaven Bilic’s team were an absolute disgrace last night.


Freedom


They resorted to organised thuggery to try and stop England.

And they had Robert Kovac sent off for an elbow on Joe Cole which knocked the Chelsea man senseless.

Josip Simunic should have joined him for blatant attacks on Walcott and Rooney. But England rose above all the provocation and their football did the talking.

Skipper John Terry spoke emotionally before this Group Six qualifier about how he would love to stand up and talk about a brilliant performance under his captaincy — which he had not been able to do since first getting the armband under Steve McClaren.

Now he could thanks to his young pal Walcott.

When Walcott went to the 2006 World Cup as a shock choice for Sven Goran Eriksson’s squad, no one could believe it.

He was not ready and did not play a single minute, but Eriksson had seen something in the kid and Capello has recognised it too. Walcott has grown up.

He has developed a strength to go with his talent and plays with that freedom Capello has been asking for from his players.

Let no England player ever again talk of being afraid to pull on the shirt. Walcott has shown there is absolutely nothing to be scared of.

When he was subbed with a few minutes left, the new England was thrown starkly into perspective as on came 33-year-old David Beckham in his place.

The order has changed. Becks is destined to be Theo’s understudy from this day forward.

And who knows where the absent Steven Gerrard will fit now. Or for that matter Michael Owen, the last man to score a competitive hat-trick in that game against the Germans.


Drastic
Perhaps the memories of the 2-0 defeat here two years ago were still in the mind in the early stages.

England started nervously and when keeper David James dropped the ball, Vedran Corluka slammed a shot into the side-netting.

But some stout defending by Terry kept the Croats at bay.

And when Heskey went down in the area under a challenge from Simunic, there was a strong case for a penalty.

Rather than rant at the ref, the visitors took heart from having rattled Croatia and on 26 minutes they were ahead with Walcott’s first international goal.

For once England got a bit of luck — which has been in short supply in recent seasons — as Rio Ferdinand came striding out from the back and played a ball towards Rooney.

Though Rooney’s pass only found Daniel Pranjic, the Croat defender’s clearance hit team-mate Robert Kovac and rebounded kindly.

Walcott collected, took aim and beat keeper Stipe Pletikosa in the far corner.

He almost got a second two minutes later when another shot from an identical position was pushed away by the keeper.

Walcott was really getting to the Croats and the next time England broke, Simunic took drastic action to halt his threat, leaving the Gunners ace flat out.

It was an outrageous challenge and Simunic got a yellow card which should have been a red.

Simunic was doing everything he could to get sent off.

He blatantly blocked Rooney’s run just after half-time but did not even get a talking-to.

From the free-kick by Lampard, Pletikosa dived to his right to push the ball away.

The dark side of the Croats was coming out and Kovac’s elbow on Joe Cole was criminal.

Cole went to ground, tried to get up and then his legs buckled under him.


Bang
There was blood everywhere and the Chelsea midfielder was out cold.

Kovac was rightly sent off and Cole was carted off to the medical centre.

With England a man to the good it was all looking very promising and the goal they scored on 59 minutes was an absolute cracker.

Lampard fed Heskey, who laid the ball off to Rooney and he found Walcott.

It was Walcott’s favourite spot and from the same position as he scored the first, he picked out the bottom corner once more. Total football or what?

After 63 minutes England had another. Substitute Jermaine Jenas got to the goal-line and cut the ball back for Rooney, who side-footed home.

It was what we had been waiting for from Rooney — his first England goal since the 2-1 defeat in Russia last October — and what we want more of.

Lampard thought he had a fourth following another good move but it was ruled out for an earlier foul by Heskey.

Croatia substitute Mario Mandzukic pulled a goal back 12 minutes from time.

But England were never going to blow it and Walcott broke on to Rooney’s pass with eight minutes left to complete his magnificent treble.

It was enough to make Bilic wish he had gone to West Ham — and things have to get pretty bad for anyone to want to do that

The world woke yesterday to news of the scientific test on the big bang theory and the fear was England might finish the day disappearing down a black hole. Instead they made a very big bang of their own.

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Shinnawy
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PostSubject: Re: England make a big win against Croatia   Thu Sep 11, 2008 3:49 am

i predicted england to win but not with this big result.

croatia is a good organised team and we have seen them in the euros.

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Mahdiano
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PostSubject: Re: England make a big win against Croatia   Thu Sep 11, 2008 4:08 am

shinnawy wrote:
SAY it loud, say it proud - England are back.

Say it loud , Capello saved u

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Shinnawy
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PostSubject: Re: England make a big win against Croatia   Thu Sep 11, 2008 4:09 am

Mahdiano wrote:
shinnawy wrote:
SAY it loud, say it proud - England are back.

Say it loud , Capello saved u

TRUE!!!!! lol!

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Sehs



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PostSubject: Re: England make a big win against Croatia   Fri Sep 12, 2008 2:21 pm

shinnawy wrote:
Mahdiano wrote:
shinnawy wrote:
SAY it loud, say it proud - England are back.

Say it loud , Capello saved u

TRUE!!!!! lol!

TOTALY TRUE
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EL LODDZ
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PostSubject: Re: England make a big win against Croatia   Fri Sep 12, 2008 7:30 pm

Sehs wrote:
shinnawy wrote:
Mahdiano wrote:
shinnawy wrote:
SAY it loud, say it proud - England are back.

Say it loud , Capello saved u

TRUE!!!!! lol!

TOTALY TRUE

totally totally TRUE lol!

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