This is a World Cup year so the English media will hype up England's chances as usual but really what we have are some decent full backs and central defenders and some hardworking journeymen defensive midfielders. As for the creative element? A Messi or more specific to the game I am watching now, a Salah -- who is in the process of scoring 4 and laying on the other in a 5-0 drubbing? Sadly not. Harry Kane undoubtedly is a terrific finisher but he does that with the help of a Dane, a Korean and a variety of other nationalities. I am pretty pleased that Iceland didn't make it but undoubtedly there is a another banana skin beckoning.
I don't know why but watching the game made me think of a cup match my school old boys team played in the Southend Borough Combination some 40+ years ago. It finished 13-11 after double extra time. No penalties back then, you just played till you finished.
It was the regular 90 minutes plus extra time of two 15 minute halves and then another two 10 minute halves. It was 8-8 after 90 minutes, 11-11 after the first period of extra time and we went down 13-11 after the second period. One guy on their side scored 5 and should really have scored 10. Nobody on our side scored more than 1 goal and there were no substitutes which means that everyone including our goalkeeper scored. I cannot believe that that record will ever be beaten!
I haven't watched any amateur games for years so do wonder if the global game at its grass roots level is still played this way. I do hope so.
Incidentally this is a great advert, particularly so as the poor suffering opponents are wearing the same strip that we used to!