Friday, June 18, 2004
  Two Strikers
Mark, I agree with you that Henry and Trezeguet are not working together as they should, though I think you're stretching it too far to suggest that this is a vindication of the idea that one striker supported from deep is better than two in principle. I could equally cite the performance of Holland after the substitute appearance of Van Hooijdonk (apologies for the spelling, lunch break and no time to google) as evidence of how important it is to have two presences in the box, pressurising defenders who otherwise have an easy time doubling up on a lone striker like Pauleta/Vieri/Kuranyi/every other team playing a lone striker and thus negating many promising attacking positions.

Don't get me wrong though, a dynamic attacking midfielder is usually the difference between a good team and a great team. Decent support from the wings for France (again there was none) would have made them far more dangerous, especially with Zidane then free to patrol the edge of the box.

His flick from that corner that Gallas wasted though was absolutely divine. Moment of skill of the tournament so far.

What do you think about Italy for tonight? Personally I think losing Totti might be good for them. He is too talismanic for that team, he doesn't have quite enough ability to back up such a totem-role. Cassano alongside Vieri with Pirlo in midfield (a better passer than Totti in my opinion) would be a more threatening formation than the Totti-Camoranesi-Del Piero-Vieri formation they played against Denmark. Above all though, Camoranesi must not play. Along with Simao he is my Euro 2004 hate figure, a crap journeyman keeping out much more talented, much more exciting younger players who might have the hunger to really kick the competition into gear.
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