It's time for Gerrard to dominate

11:30am Monday 16th June 2014

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 . . .

RACING: Pendleton gets off to a flier on debut

Oxford Mail:

7:21pm Thursday 2nd July 2015

Olympic track cyclist Victoria Pendleton can hardly wait to get back in the saddle again after making a polished start to her new career as a jockey in finishing eighth on Mighty Mambo at Newbury.

Update: Ryan Clarke on his Oxford United departure

Oxford Mail:

4:14pm Thursday 2nd July 2015

RYAN Clarke has admitted it is a sad day but he leaves Oxford United with "amazing memories" after six years at the club.

Stewart Donald invests more than £500k to buy Oxford United stake

Oxford Mail:

1:00pm Thursday 2nd July 2015

OXFORD United have received a major financial injection with lifelong supporter Stewart Donald set to acquire a ten per cent stake in the club.

RACING: Victoria Pendleton excited ahead of first competitive action

Oxford Mail:

8:30am Thursday 2nd July 2015

VICTORIA Pendleton admits she is struggling to contain her excitement ahead of her first public appearance in a horse racing saddle.

BOWLS: City triples seal national championship spot

Oxford Mail:

8:00am Thursday 2nd July 2015

TWO women’s triples from Oxford City & County have qualified for the National Championships at Leamington Spa in August.

BAR BILLIARDS: Democrats earn draw in opener

Oxford Mail: cue and cue ball for images of snooker and billards for sport

7:20am Thursday 2nd July 2015

West Oxford Democrats Club started their OBBA Summer League campaign with a thrilling 3-3 draw with Berinsfield Club in Group A, writes PETE EWINS.

BOWLS: May and Watts to fly Oxon flag for Under 25s

Oxford Mail: image of bowls close up of bowling woods and jack for sport

7:10am Thursday 2nd July 2015

DEAN May and Sam Watts will represent Oxfordshire in the National U25 Singles Championship at Leamington Spa.

ATHLETICS: James Bolton and Sophie Carter shine at Thame

Oxford Mail:

7:00am Thursday 2nd July 2015

Woodstock Harriers’ James Bolton missed out on the Thame 10K title by just five seconds.

BOWLS: Headington strengthen grip on top flight table

Oxford Mail:

7:00am Thursday 2nd July 2015

HEADINGTON continued their relentless progress towards yet another Division 1 title in the Oxfordshire Bowls League, sponsored by Bridle Insurance.

ATHLETICS: Captain Ben Claridge driven by memory of home Olympics

Oxford Mail:

7:00am Thursday 2nd July 2015

After watching on from the stands at London 2012, rising star Ben Claridge has set his sights on becoming an Olympian.

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