The drought of not winning a World Cup has lasted for England since 1966 when Geoff Hurst scored three goals for a hat-trick against West Germany that secured the Cup final for the English side. All of these years later they once again find themselves with a talented team but it remains to be seen whether or not they can finally bring it together and make a deeper run in the tournament than just to the quarter-finals. The quarter-finals have been as far as they have been able to take it the past two World Cups and they have not reached beyond that since the 1990 tournament in Italy. The UEFA qualifying for England was a relative breeze compared to when they failed to make a Euro 2008 appearance. England finished this campaign with a 9-1-0 record with their only defeated coming 1-0 in the hands of a very respectable Ukrainian side. They also posted a goal differential of plus twenty-eight, giving up only six goals in ten matches.
Leading the way in scoring for England was Wayne Rooney who added nine goals for himself and supplemented his teammates with five assists during qualifying. Rooney will naturally need to keep up this type of performance if England has any hope of bringing home the title of world’s best this year. Rooney will be joined on the team by the usual cast of superstars such as Steven Gerrard and Frank Lampard. England also sports a strong defensive side that should prove tough for their opponents to crack.
Finding themselves with the Draw of Group C, England should be licking their chops at the opportunity of a reasonably easy path to the second round of the Cup. First team up to bat is the United States in a game that is being hyped up because of a game played sixty years ago. Unless players from then are still living and planning on suiting up it has absolutely no effect on this game. Most have the U.S. as the second best team in the group so playing in top form right out of the gate will be important for both sides. England will be favored and know that the Americans will put up a fight but I feel that England will win the game. Algeria will be the second game and Slovenia will be the last match of their group play. I expect England to finish at the top of the group and barring an upset by the United States a pretty quiet road to the next round. A team like Ghana or Serbia could be the next opponent after that in the second round. I think England will once again get to the quarter-finals but I’m not going to put them past the semis.