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Out with a fizz ...

Filed: Tuesday, 27th February 2001
By: Amanda Lake

The last ever match beneath the Twin Towers. England V Germany, World Cup Qualifier. What a fitting end for an old stadium. In Hollywood the script would have had the perfect ending, the credits would have faded to our triumphant heroes celebrating a win underneath gloriously sunny skies and 70,000 plus England fans chanting their names.

This isn't Hollywood and the Germans rewrote the script. Chucking it down with rain and our party spoilt big time. Then the manager decides its time to quit. Hell fire and damnation it wasn't the weekend to be in England was it?

I honestly would not know how to go about discussing the match as a whole. I was up in my seat shouting like some demented female along with the rest of the supporters and quite honestly I could see the Germans were going to win. I joked with my friend that if we lost Kevin Keegan would be gone, little did I know how right I would be! But I expected it on Thursday. You don't expect your manager to jump ship 3 days before another World Cup Qualifier do you?

I will admit that Keegan's tactics and team selections, on occasion, have left me rather bemused. Quite often I have sat and discussed this with my friend. Leaving Rio and Kieron Dyer out of the Euro 2000 squad was enough for me. But frankly I expected it. I have always felt that Kevin Keegan did not pick his players through talent and their performances but because they were his favourites. I have always felt that he does not like Rio and Frank (remember his public criticism of Frank last year? I was hopping mad!!!)

The only player I would be sticking with each time would be David Beckham, love him or hate him he wears that shirt with pride and yesterday he was the only one that I felt fully deserved a round of applause, closely followed by Tony Adams and Martin Keown. The rest should have been ashamed of themselves. They showed no commitment and on times I felt that really they would probably preferred to have been elsewhere than there. They believe that they can do no wrong and have a god given right to be in the England squad. Graeme Le Saux has been out injured for 11 months and breezes back into the squad and you have Rio playing his heart out and he doesn't get a look in! Then he is subbed for Gareth Barry!

Yesterday, what really confounded me was Southgate in for Gerrard. I know that dear old Gareth has taken some stick in his time but really that was quite bizarre for want of a better word. That was asking a bit much of him and it put pressure on the team as a whole. The Germans must have been laughing like mad when they saw that one. Surely there was another option? Where were Joe and Rio? Nowhere to be seen. What a waste of time picking them if he had no intention of using them. I am sure that Joe could have turned that game on its head, I mean those Germans would have been running for the airport and a plane home if we had unleashed Joe Cole on them. Rio could have held his own at the back and given the Germans some grief but it wasn't to be was it? If only, if only. David Seaman, well, retire now son, before you embarrass us further, and get your hair cut!

So match over and we all hung around for the loud bangs that were promised by the announcer. I am afraid that the fireworks in the England camp were louder than the bang of the Wembley fireworks. A pathetic end to a horrendous day........and then he quits. And now we have Howard Wilkinson in charge until after the Finland match.

This should be quite interesting. He hardly inspired when he took charge for the one match when we were in between managers and he didn't really capitalise on the good work done by Peter Taylor as Under 21 manager. But, better the devil you know than the devil you don't. I don't envy him and quite frankly he would probably rather be doing something else write now. I am anxiously awaiting his team selection, will he give Rio and Joe a chance to show their stuff or will he play safe with the tried and tested and put us through hell again. Wednesday will tell. Then we have to see what the good old age pensioners at the FA decide. Their choice of England manager will be interesting.

In my opinion it has to be a Brit, notice I say British, not English. I would not really want to see the team in the hands of a foreign coach, I just think it would be a bad move and one which would not go down well with the vast majority of fans. We should be looking to the like of Roy Hodgson, who has loads of continental managerial experience and who managed Switzerland to a World Cup. Or we have El Tel. We didn't do too badly in Euro 96 and he seemed to inspire them to push themselves to the limit, but the FA don't like him.

Time will tell and we have to get through Wednesday first........Wednesday.. I am dreading it.......

Please note that the opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily represent the views of, nor should be attributed to, KUMB.com.

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