Qatar 2022: No victor, no vanquished as England and USA share spoils

November 25th 2022, 9:12:57 pm

In the battle of tea vs coffee, both teams failed to bring the heat.

There was nothing to separate the two sides in a game that barely threatened to inspire.

From the moment the fixture list was decided and the draws were made, England vs USA immediately stood out as one of the games to look forward to at the Qatar 2022 World Cup.

Most people imagined both sides reprising their roles in the Boston Tea Party and serving up an entertaining battle on the pitch in Qatar, but reality is often disappointing and they ended up producing a very cautious 0-0 draw with neither team able to claim that they deserved more.

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England started with the exact same team from their 6-2 humbling of Iran with captain Harry Kane declared fit to start, while the USA elected to switch to a more conservative 4-4-2 approach from the more adventurous 4-3-3 that they started with against Wales.

The first half rarely threatened to create any sparks as both teams sized each other up, with the USA having the best chances of the game, and coming closest to breaking the deadlock when Pulisic hit the crossbar from close range when he looked dead-on to score.

That was the only big chance of the first half that saw USA create the better chances despite England having up to 62% of possession.

England found most of their possession to be sterile and they could only muster five shots to USA’s eight while both teams could only manage one hot on target each.

To say that nothing happened in the second half would be an understatement.

England’s solution to not being able to create chances with the Lion's share of possession they had in the first half was to cede the possession to the USA hoping that they could find a chance on the break.

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As you can imagine, this did not work so well for the Brits who struggled even more to create chances, managing fewer attempts on goal than in the first half while their own goal lived a charmed life.

Neither side could create a clear-cut chance for most of the second half as England failed to assert their dominance and looked like a shadow of the fast breaking, assertive team that walloped Iran just a few days ago.

Despite playing like a team with a handicap for most of the game, England still had the best chance of the second half and almost stole it at the death with a Harry Kane header that on most other days he would have put away.

That would have been a harsh end to the match for the USA who more than deserved their share of the points so it is probably better that Kane was unable to hit the target.

Overall not what it promised to be, as neither football nor soccer could triumph, but probably the fairest result all things considered.


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