Frank Stubbs, Fans' Diarist, July 14, 2010
Considering how much I enjoy football and every last moment of the experiences and emotion that goes with it, I thoroughly enjoy the summer break.
A chance to take in some sunshine and enjoy many of life's 'other' entertainment, my location move has taken up much of my time on this occasion, with only the fantastic Isle of Wight Festival to report as a quite stupendous weekender.
This year however, has been one of those that comes around every four years, South Africa playing host to our sport's biggest international tournament.
Being English, of course I wanted my country to do well in the tournament. Unfortunately that wasn't to be. Looking at the facts, whatever way you look at the first half of the Germany game, it should have been level at half time. A glaring error that yet again emphasises the need for technology, if only for those relatively rare 'over the line' decisions, changed the whole attitude and tactics both teams would have taken into the second period.
Although we all like to think we are at times, we are not football coaches or managers. With plenty of time on the clock and dominating the game for the first time however, wasn't having every player bar one in front of Lampard as he took that free kick just a little bit naive?! If the ball hit the wall we were in trouble. Is that just me?
The rest of course is history, overall however we can have absolutely no complaints. Throughout the tournament England were at best mediocre.
For me the best team at the tournament ending up taking the crown and if there are any Gooners out there who couldn't see massive similarities between Spain and our own brand of football I'd be amazed.
In every match they were patient and stuck to their footballing beliefs and style. In the end it paid off.
It is extremely interesting to me how the pundits have slated Holland for their tactics yet when commenting on our own game teams are praised and encouraged to play in exactly the same way to stop our team from playing. Hypocrisy methinks.
Finally, a rarity. Is it only me who thought Howard Webb had a pretty good game? A very difficult game to referee considering what was going on, it was obvious he did everything he could to make sure the whole spectacle wasn't spoilt by sending someone off and only made one or two visual errors.
Me praising a referee? Now there's a turn-up!