England squads always open to debate
The thing about any England squad is that it's always open to debate.
Roy Hodgson follows a long line of England bosses whose selections have been open to question. I myself still think Glenn Hoddle made a huge error omitting Paul Gascoigne from his France 98 squad, especially in light of the fact that he took three players who never featured, and we can only speculate what kind of an impact Gazza would have made as a sub in the Argentina game?
So the latest England squad for the Euros has polarised opinions, with the omission of Leicester City’s Danny Drinkwater being the main topic of conversation. Drinkwater will probably feel hard done by but, then again, joins a long list of players down the years who failed to make the final cut, Gazza included.
Hodgson has set out his stall and if England get through the group stage and do well in the knockout stages, all these debates will be consigned to history.
There’s no doubting Paul Barber’s contribution to the Albion’s progress off the field over the last few seasons but I really do think the Brighton chief executive is a little wide of the mark with his proposals to the Football League to revamp the play-offs.
While we’re all still extremely disappointed at missing out on going up to the Premier League, last August before a ball was kicked we were all aware of the rules – as we were in 1991, 2004, 2013 and 2014.
The proposal that the third-placed team automatically goes into the Wembley final does, from any outsider, smack of sour grapes. Granted Paul, as Albion fans we do sometimes let things linger, but on this occasion it should be very much a case of letting things go.
With the club heading for a record amount of season ticket holders,I’d much prefer Mr Barber spent his time this summer helping Chris Hughton negotiate deals of the incoming players that will ensure a top-two finish and the Albion won’t even need the play-offs.
One transfer I’d certainly like to see over the summer is the return to the Albion of Glenn Murray. At 33, it’s his last significant move and, while it would mean a reported seven-figure sum going the other way to Bournemouth, in the grand scheme of things, in my opinion, it’s money well spent.
Ancient history I know, and almost on the play-off theme something we should all as supporters let go, but Murray’s departure to Palace in 2011, came about as a result of an alleged fall-out with Gus Poyet – with the former Albion boss, on the face of it, gambling on Craig Mackail-Smith replacing Muzza.
History tells us one player thrived while the other player’s career never really fulfilled its potential, so a return to the Amex for Murray might actually right some of the five year old wrongs.
The departure of Worthing’s leading scorer Lloyd Dawes to Lewes was always going to be disappointing for the Woodside faithful but, without wishing to trot out the traditional cliche, it’s all part and parcel of football.
Managers and players come and go. On the positive side, Lloyd was a big part of last season’s success and his contribution will never be forgotten at the club.
But as one door shuts, another one opens and it wasn’t long before the Rebels faithful had some good news with the arrival of the highly-rated Kane Wills from Margate. As signings go, this is huge given his standing in local football circles and represents a real statement of intent for the club.
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