FROM the setting of a Las Vegas bar I got ready to watch England’s opener against Italy amongst 100 or so other fans.
I was excited with the news of our line-up, but would have preferred to see Adam Lalana play instead of Jordan Henderson.
With Italy missing legendary goalkeeper Buffon, it gave me even more confidence of victory.
My pre-game prediction was an England 2-1 success and, being in the gambling city of the world, it would have been rude not to bet on it.
Sitting in the middle of the ‘Chelsea In America’ supporters group, we sang the National Anthem and football songs.
I jumped for joy and screamed like a girl when I thought Raheem Sterling had scored after only five minutes, only to be brought crashing down to earth as a replay showed it hit the side-netting.
England were playing well which was good to see – and my prediction seemed a formality.
But when Italy took the lead, it killed our momentum.
I thought Leighton Baines was exposed down the left and didn’t look like the man everyone says is good enough to replace England’s most capped full-back Ashley Cole.
With Baines having to deal with a two-on-one overload for most of the game, Italy’s winning goal came from a cross from his channel.
In order for us to progress, I want to see our top man – and captain – Steven Gerrard dominate the next two games in the manner he does when in the red shirt of Liverpool.
It’s not all doom and gloom though.
The way we played in general was good, and Spain lost their opening game on their way to winning the World Cup in 2010 . . .
- Latest Sport news
9:30am Wednesday 26th November 2014
MICKEY Lewis backed James Roberts to come back stronger than ever after Oxford United were boosted by the news the striker’s hamstring injury was not serious.
4:00pm Wednesday 26th November 2014
CONGRATULATIONS to Lewis Hamilton on winning the Formula 1 drivers’ world championship for the second time in his superb career.
1:00pm Wednesday 26th November 2014
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12:31pm Wednesday 26th November 2014
OXFORD University hammered Loughborough University 43-0 in their penultimate Varsity Match warm-up at a very wet Iffley Road last night.
12:29pm Wednesday 26th November 2014
BANBURY United exited the Birmingham Senior Cup after losing 6-1 at Coleshill Town.
9:00am Wednesday 26th November 2014
LONDON Welsh could see first-choice half backs Olly Barkley and Piri Weepu return to face Northampton at the Kassam Stadium in the Aviva Premiership on Sunday.
8:50am Wednesday 26th November 2014
With their closest rivals in cup action, Carterton Town A increased their lead at the top of the Witney & District FA Premier Division to eight points with a 3-1 home win over bottom club Brize Norton, writes ANTHONY BARLOW.
8:40am Wednesday 26th November 2014
North Berks League Division 1 leaders Berinsfield made short work of bottom side Saxton Rovers with a comfortable 5-0 home win, writes PHIL ANNETS.
8:30am Wednesday 26th November 2014
DAMINI Bhagat hit a hat-trick for Oxford City in the Under 12 Red League as they ended leaders Tower Hill Vixens’ perfect record with a 6-2 away win.
8:00am Wednesday 26th November 2014
KIDLINGTON Old Boys won an epic Oxfordshire Charity Cup second round tie at home to West Witney following a 2-2 draw after extra time.