I’d like to say that youd have to give an almighty Nelson Muntz’esque ‘ha-ha!’ to Spain, after their defeat to Croatia yesterday, but after watching pockets of the game in between making a late dinner and eating said dinner, I’ve come to a different conclusion. Croatia are actually quite good. 

They did England/Sp*rs up their game against the Czech Republic, but at least they atoned with this scalp, whilst at the same time showing the world that Spain are far from the ‘unbeatables’ that I witnessed when they won the World Cup six years ago. 

The Arsenal interest in that game was minimised, what with Hector not really seeing any action at all during this competition, but I don’t mind that one bit. The guy practically played all of the games last season for Arsenal and so for him to not be used only means he’s got less chance of picking up a fatigue-based injury.

In the other game, Petr Cech couldn’t prevent his Czech team from going home early, so let’s look at the positives there and see that he gets to start his summer earlier and so should be fine and dandy for the opening game of the season. The same can’t be said for Mesut though, who’s man-of-the-match performance, saw Germany top their group. I don’t know if Germany and France would play each other until the final and I’m not really that fussed about working out the permutations, but that just feels to me like the final right now. The team on home turf against clearly the best team in world football. And mainly because they’ve got a genius like Özil. I didn’t get to watch the game yesterday as I was travelling back from work, but I suspect he was at the centre of everything good, because he usually is for us. Imagine if Özil’s family had emigrated to the UK when he was a baby, to make him eligible to be an England player? Of course what with a possible Brexit on our hands, it’d be another reason to avoid the exiting of the EU, that’s for sure!

By all accounts it appears as though Northern Ireland set up to not concede against a clearly superior opposition – just like Solvakia – but the difference is that the Germans have vastly superior playmakers who can find those killed balls and thread the perfectly weighted passes to strikers. It is naive to suggest it is the lack of finishing ability of the England players that cost England top spot on Thursday. England players were taking pot-shots with a crowded box inside them for vast chunks of the match, only getting in behind on two occasions as I recall (Vardy and Sturridge), so imagine if there was a playmaker putting a striker through against the ‘keeper on four or five occasions? All of the England strikers are half-decent enough to be able to put at least one of those types of chances away. So that is why England would be in dreamland if it had its own version of Mesut Özil.

Today we find out who England will play, with my thoughts on it being Hungary or Austria. I think Portugal will beat the Hungarians and I suspect that will have them too the group, with Iceland and Austria probably finishing goalless. That’s my hunch, anyway. It’d be nice to see Wales versus Northern Ireland, but I think that ship has probably sailed, so let’s just hope they both get a good draw. 

Thankfully, there’s little decent transfer tittle-tattle to worry about at the moment, to which I’m thankful to the Euro’s for. I never thought I’d see the day that I’m pleased to see international football being played, but perhaps I’m just so worn out of writing about the mindless speculation after writing this blog for five years, that any kind of football will doodle do.

Have a happy Wednesday. It’s my anniversary today and I’m at a conference at work, furiously live tweeting in the name of the jobs industry, so I’ll be looking forward to a nice glass of wine and a meal with the Management come 5pm.

Smell ya later.