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North London Red

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Everything posted by North London Red

  1. Poland won't be easy and they're way overdue a win against us. We've drawn them in our group countless times over the last 35 years, and have finished above them pretty much every time - at some point they're due a result against us. I'd probably back England to get the better of them over the two games, but not with any great degree of confidence. That said, Sweden were the team I most wanted to avoid from pot 2. Last time in world cup qualifying they beat France, finished above Holland, and then knocked Italy out in a play off. The 'four team group' comment is also very true - go
  2. The BBC website were showing it live, as the balls were being drawn out of the bowls.
  3. With three teams left from pot 5, we were guaranteed one of Cyprus (last played them away in 1975), Armenia (never played) or Andorra...and ended up with Andorra, again (England played them four times in recent years). And with three teams left from pot 6, we were guaranteed one of Malta, Liechtenstein or San Marino...and ended up with San Marino (who we've also played four times in recent years). On the assumption that travel restarts towards the end of Q1 2021 (a big assumption, admittedly), the travelling highlights have to be Tirana and Budapest. Armenia, Cyprus or Liechtenstein
  4. With three teams left from pot 5, we were guaranteed one of Cyprus (last played them away in 1975), Armenia (never played) or Andorra...and ended up with Andorra, again (England played them twice in recent years). And with three teams left from pot 6, we were guaranteed one of Malta, Liechtenstein or San Marino...and ended up with San Marino (who we've also played twice in recent years). On the assumption that travel restarts towards the end of Q1 2021 (a big assumption, admittedly), the travelling highlights have to be Tirana and Budapest. Armenia, Cyprus or Liechtenstein would have
  5. The BBC are reporting that based on the recent FCDO statement ('Unlike other travel to the UK, there will be no exemptions to this quarantine policy'), the 'elite sport' exemption will not apply in this case, so until and unless there's an another announcement, it would appear to be an issue: https://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/football/54858614 https://www.gov.uk/government/news/travel-ban-implemented-to-protect-public-health-following-denmark-covid-19-mink-outbreak
  6. Not according to the latest rumours. Belgium had fans in the stadium for their friendly against Ivory Coast last week, and in line with UEFA's guidance that teams can allow fans in at 30% capacity (subject to local or governmental restrictions), it is expected they will have fans in attendance for the game v England in Brussels. The comment was not in jest.
  7. Yes, Henderson certainly made the most of whatever contact there was. His interview after the game also suggested he knew it. I wonder what VAR would have made of the challenge. He did something similar in the World Cup against Colombia. It’s not a side to his game that I’d endorse.
  8. England may have had a bit of good fortune but Belgium only have themselves to blame. It was bad defending from Meunier to let Henderson get goal-side at the corner that led to the penalty (and whilst Henderson certainly made the most of the contact, I think he was impeded, albeit only slightly). And they were wasteful with the other chances they created. England improved from about 30-35 minutes onwards and managed to negate Belgium for most of the second half. We may not have deserved the outright win but I thought our recovery after that dodgy 20 minute spell probably merited a point.
  9. Some of the negativity when we were 1-0 down (eg on the BBC live text feed) was staggering. Playing the number 1 ranked side in the world - and missing a number of our more creative / offensive players - yet we still managed to dig out a win with a much improved second half performance. We had a dodgy spell of 20 minutes or so in the first half when we looked second best by some distance (against, let’s not forget, the number 1 ranked side in the world), but improved towards the end of the first half, and then improved again significantly in the second half. And won. And yet still some pe
  10. Michael Hector has had 15 loans so far, and Trevor Benjamin had 13: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Michael_Hector https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Trevor_Benjamin
  11. On the grounds that over the last 20 years, each of Reading, Cardiff, Swansea, Brighton, Huddersfield, Wigan, Blackpool, Stoke and Bournemouth have reached the premier league (all clubs that we’ve vied with in the lower leagues over that time period, and a good number of whom have had similar or slightly lower average attendances and / or less financial muscle than our owner and / or a longer spell outside the top flight than we’ve had since our last spell there), and on the grounds that Brentford might well join that list tomorrow night, we should absolutely be aiming for promotion to the top
  12. The big concern for me is we've taken 10 points from our last 14 games, which is relegation form. Six of those points came against fairly woeful Hull and Middlesbrough sides, both of whom were at the wrong end of the table. If we start next season in a similar vein, the new man in charge could find himself presiding over a relegation dogfight if we're not careful. Hopefully my pessimism is misplaced but we will clearly need to buck our ideas up between now and the start of 2020-21.
  13. Debatable. I read a stat recently that something like only 15 English clubs have ever had an average attendance of over 40,000 during any season in their history. Most of the 15 were ones you’d expect (Man Utd, Liverpool, Everton, Arsenal etc) with a couple of possible surprises (Charlton and Wolves), but Leeds weren’t on the list. Admittedly they’ve been capacity constrained in recent years (Elland Road’s capacity is just under 40k) but history suggests there’s no guarantee they’d average more than 40k even if their capacity allowed it.
  14. I love these sorts of threads. Just googled a couple of the Spurs players and it turns out that despite not making a first team appearance for Spurs, Almond played against Souness at the 1982 World Cup (Almond emigrated in the early 70s and ended up playing for New Zealand). And Ray Clarke won the Eredivisie with Ajax, scoring 26 goals in 31 games - can’t say I’d ever heard of him until just now, and his career in England before moving to Holland wasn’t particularly stellar.
  15. https://www.rebellionresearch.com/blog/northern-italy-wuhan-partners-for-better-or-worse Quite an interesting article here about the Italian situation. It might already have been covered, but I never realised the extent to which northern Italy’s textile and garment industry was reliant on Chinese labour and that it had such close links with Wuhan.
  16. Fair points. The issue of the virus resurfacing once the restrictions are lifted will also dictate how long these measures last. Is it beyond the realms of possibility that lockdowns will last in Europe until a vaccine is widely available (which the experts are saying is likely to be at least a year away)? The length of time to develop, manufacture and distribute bulk quantities of a vaccine is another reason why these restrictions might be in place for the long haul.
  17. The China situation is one I can't quite work out, since it seems to contradict the doomsday scenarios which are implicit in the Imperial College paper and which have been reported in various places. If China's latest numbers are right, it could be the one ray of light here, and the situation may not be quite as bad as feared.
  18. Entirely agree. A couple of things in recent days have made me think this is going to last for much longer than some people think. Firstly, Chris Whitty was asked the other day how long these measures could be in place. His answer was 'weeks or months', and I got the sense he was being deliberately vague because he already knows the answer but doesn't dare reveal it to the public as the answer won't be a popular one. Secondly, if the government are offering assistance to businesses for the next 12 months, what does that tell you? Thirdly, I come back to the point about 60% of
  19. On the point about herd immunity, for 60% of the UK population to get COVID-19 within one year, you’d need 100,000 new cases every day. If that’s the scenario the government are planning for and which they consider realistic, then it makes you wonder how bad the alternatives (all of which they’ve presumably modelled) would be. If there are 100,000 new cases every day, even if 98% of those cases are only mild or moderate, the other 2% would very quickly put an intolerable strain on all healthcare providers in the country. Very worrying times ahead.
  20. It will be England's first away game against Belgium since 1970. We've played them in seven different cities since, and also played at Euro 2000 in Charleroi, but we haven't played Belgium in Belgium for 50 years. It will also be England's first trip to Iceland since 1982. And we could potentially have two trips to Copenhagen this year. Pretty happy with that.
  21. I was in Cape Town for the Algeria game in 2010. I was also in Lisbon and Coimbra at Euro 2004 when Rooney was outstanding - and quite possibly the best player in the tournament. However much I was annoyed at Rooney in 2010, it’s wide of the make to say he was rubbish at every major championship England played at.
  22. For anyone with a conditional quarter final ticket for England, the Fan ID process (if that quarter final is in St Petersburg) looks like fun and games. The Fan ID system is currently only accepting applications from fans with a confirmed match ticket for a game at Krestovsky. The system won't allow fans with conditional quarter final tickets to apply at present, and for all games in St Petersburg a Fan ID is mandatory to gain entry to the stadium. That means that if England finish second in the group and then win the last 16 game in Copenhagen (admittedly two quite big 'ifs'), thousands
  23. Our last interaction with Tottenham would have been the loans for Rose and Caulker, wouldn’t it? I know their spells at Ashton Gate were a good few years ago, but I wonder whether Caulker’s interview with the Guardian a couple of years ago, and the issues he mentions (which Tottenham would presumably have been aware of well before the interview was published) have affected our relationship with them. “Tottenham sent me to Bristol City on loan at 18 and they put me in a flat in the city centre surrounded by nightclubs, two casinos opposite, the kind of money I’d never seen in my life
  24. Could it be played 24 hours later? The weather forecast for Wednesday looks a lot better than for Tuesday. Clearly it would hugely inconvenience our fans if it was pushed back by 24 hours at relatively short notice (eg late on Tuesday afternoon) and Shrewsbury might also not be able to get the game on 24 hours later given the need for a certain number of stewards (who might not all be able to work on Wednesday at short notice), unless it’s played behind closed doors. Pushing it back to Tuesday 21st wouldn’t give much time for Liverpool, potentially Reading, and either City or Shrew
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