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 . . .

FOOTBALL: Mike Ford is relishing challenge after taking over as Banbury United boss

Oxford Mail:

9:30am Saturday 23rd May 2015

Former Oxford United captain Mike Ford is relishing a return to management with Banbury United, after spending more than a year out of the game.

YOUTH CRICKET: Valentin goes so close to six out of six

Oxford Mail:

8:30am Saturday 23rd May 2015

Valentin Guiraud came agonisingly close to the perfect over – only for a no ball to ruin a landmark moment.

WOMEN'S FOOTBALL: Oxford United Women's boss Les Taylor says they can upset odds

Oxford Mail: football generic

7:00am Saturday 23rd May 2015

Les Taylor is confident that his Oxford United Women side can upset title hopefuls Everton when they welcome the Merseysiders to Abingdon United's Northcourt Road in FA Women's Super League 2 on Sunday (2pm) writes MATTHEW BRUCE.

CRICKET: Faraz Amjad haul helps Oxford Spires in trophy

Oxford Mail: cricket generic

7:00am Saturday 23rd May 2015

Faraz Amjad claimed five wickets, including a hat-trick, as Oxford Spires beat Cheney School by 54 runs in the Oxon Under 14 ECB Trophy.

YOUTH CRICKET: Red-hot Coles fires fantastic century as Oxon crush Bucks

Oxford Mail:

7:00am Saturday 23rd May 2015

James Coles scored a sensational unbeaten 156 as Oxfordshire Under 12s cruised to victory over Buckinghamshire in a friendly at Abingdon Vale.

TABLE TENNIS: Karl Bushell edges Scott to claim top prize

Oxford Mail:

7:00am Saturday 23rd May 2015

Forum's Karl Bushell won the Oxford Mail Cup for the 15th time at the Oxford & District Table Tennis Association’s City Championships.

MARTIAL ARTS: Carl Davis in medal haul

Oxford Mail:

7:00am Saturday 23rd May 2015

Wantage Vale’s Carl Davis and Didcot’s Richard De-Winton helped England to a silver team medal in the board breaking event at the ITF European Championships in Andrea, Italy.

ANGLING: Wonder Chris Webb in big haul

7:00am Saturday 23rd May 2015

Chris Webb won the second round of the Darryl Simpson Memorial series match, sponsored by Top Tackle Oxford.

MOTORSPORT: Walkinshaw fired up for Silverstone challenge

Oxford Mail: Sean Walkinshaw will compete in European Formula 3 Open in 2014

7:00am Saturday 23rd May 2015

Oxfordshire racer Sean Walkinshaw is determined to continue his excellent form in the Blancpain Endurance Series when round two takes place at Silverstone this weekend.

GOLF: Bold Eddie Pepperell battles back to make cut at Wentworth

Oxford Mail:

7:00am Saturday 23rd May 2015

A THREE under par back nine saw Abingdon’s Eddie Pepperell make the cut for the latter stages of the BMW PGA Championship at Wentworth yesterday.

Back

© Copyright 2001-2015 Newsquest Media Group

Oxford Mail: site_logo http://www.oxfordmail.co.uk

Click 2 Find Business Directory http://www.oxfordmail.co.uk/trade_directory/