Big game today. The common consensus (whatever that really is), is that this is a supposed formality and that England could win with any team at Wembley. It doesn't matter that John Terry is injured, and neither the loss of Heskey, nor Owen's fit/unfit stream will not hinder the fluent performance we enjoyed against Russia and Israel a month ago. Well we'll see !
Mr McClaren (is it because I is red), hasn't announced his team yet - I guess because he doesn't want to defend his selection for too long before the game. The desperately out-of-form Robinson will continue, and the success of Gerrard and Barry will be compromised by the return sooner of later of Lampard, who the manager won't have the strength to resist. It's a good job Beckham is injured, otherwise he'd be on a plane and have a starting shirt !
This IS a big game. England could effectively go out of next year's Euros TODAY. Wednesday's match on a frozen Russian astroturf with the hosts wanting revenge for their Wembley humbling is unlikely to yield 3 points, leaving just the final game against Croatia in a month to secure qualification.
But Lifesshort and I'm excited about today's game because it's today. Who cares about Wednesday in Russia or qualification. England play at Wembley...today ! Terry's injury allows Steven Gerrard to captain the side which can only be a benefit - the squeaky-voiced boys-own hero will lead with pride and commitment. And the enigma Rooney returns after suspension all keyed up for a big performance. Lifesshort, today is all.
England...no slip-ups now !