Euro 2012 – Ukraine and Poland

March 27, 2002

Wales make solid start to rebuilding programme

Filed under: EURO 2004 — Ivan @ 12:20 pm

The News Review:

* FA take hard line on Leeds star
* Vogts wins first skirmish as Scotland put faith in youth
* O’Connor’s in the frame says Vogts
* Wales make solid start to rebuilding programme
* Aberdeen fans complain to police over linesman
* UEFA step in over England’s Euro ties
* Vogts hands Hibs star Caldwell perfect tonic for derby misery
* Ferguson’s ‘no’ to new boss was predictable

FA take hard line on Leeds star
Telegraph.co.uk – Mar 23, 2002
There is no doubt, either, that Woodgate will be given the chance to resume his international career next season, when England will begin their qualifying campaign for Euro 2004. He will be disappointed, nevertheless, at knowing he will not be going to Japan and South Korea at a time when the back-up positions in central defence behind Ferdinand and Sol Campbell are up for grabs. Woodgate’s punishment for being found guilty of affray was 100 hours of community service. He spent it painting and decorating council property, including an old people’s home, in his native Middlesbrough. And, having paid his dues, he is anxious to become actively involved in Leeds’ own community programme.

Vogts wins first skirmish as Scotland put faith in youth
Telegraph.co.uk – Mar 25, 2002
I may start with two or three of the young players. We need the young players. We are not only looking towards this game against France – we are also looking towards qualifying for Euro 2004. “For Ross, the summons should help ease his disappointment at being left out of Rangers’ winning CIS Insurance Cup final team, an omission which clearly rankled with the youngster, although he put a philosophical gloss on it yesterday. “It was one of the worst experiences I have had this season, having been involved in so many games – I’ve played about 24 times – and missing out on that one. However, the manager has to make those decisions and although I’ve had a few downers it’s been a good season for me. I have not even been involved at under-21 level and I was disappointed that it passed me by so in this case I’m just going to enjoy it.

O’Connor’s in the frame says Vogts
Edinburgh Evening News – Mar 26, 2002
But O’Connor is a very interesting player. He goes directly for goal, he is always looking for a goal – I love his style of play. ” Vogts has already pinpointed a lack of goals as a major problem facing the Scots in their bid to qualify for Euro 2004 in Portugal, pointing out that those in his current squad have managed just three between them and, in fact, former Hearts midfielder Colin Cameron is top scorer with two goals in his 14 international appearances. However, with a hectic schedule of matches organised – tomorrow night’s glamour clash precedes the friendly with Nigeria at Pittodrie, a short tour of the Far East in which three games will be played and a visit from Denmark in August – O’Connor could firmly be part of Vogts plans by the time the Euro 2004 qualifying campaign kicks off in September. By the time of the Danish visit on August 21, Vogts hopes to have “20 or 22 players” pencilled in while he’s also determined to have a summer school for promising youngsters. He said: “The door will be open, both ways. If players play well for their club they will be in my side but if they play not so well then they’ll be back to their club… If players play well for their club they will be in my side but if they play not so well then they’ll be back to their club. ” Vogts, however, is well aware that the next few months will be a learning process as he evaluates the talent available to him. And to that end he insisted he’s not concerned about the result tomorrow. He said: “It’s a big challenge to start with against the world champions. “We are playing against the best team in the world, and next month we face Nigeria who are 17th equal so I am not looking at results but players and I am sure they will do well. ” Vogts has already signalled his intention to go with youth, his first squad having been dubbed “Berti’s Babes”.

Wales make solid start to rebuilding programme
Telegraph.co.uk – Mar 27, 2002
The left-back position has been a problem for Wales but, in Cardiff’s Danny Gabbidon, Hughes has the ready made article. The sparse crowd in Cardiff last night should congratulate themselves for making the effort to turn up… The sparse crowd in Cardiff last night should congratulate themselves for making the effort to turn up. Wales were depleted and treated this game as preparation for the testing European Championship qualifiers, including games against Italy and Yugoslavia. Indeed, both teams could feel sorry for themselves; while others prepare for the World Cup finals, Wales and the Czech Republic will be left behind, with only the Euro 2004 qualifiers to consider. The Czechs, beaten by Belgium in the World Cup play-offs, included Liverpool’s Vladimir Smicer and former Manchester United midfielder Karel Poborsky. Other absentees included Robert Earnshaw, Andy Johnson, Mark Crossley, Carl Robinson, Iwan Roberts, Kit Symons, Mark Pembridge and Darren Barnard.

Aberdeen fans complain to police over linesman
Telegraph.co.uk – Mar 24, 2002
Are we to believe this moral outrage felt by Aberdeen, whose supporters’ thuggery now renders visits of Celtic and Rangers more poisonous than Old Firm matches?While Aberdeen doubtless have a majority of peaceable supporters, the sizeable minority who damaged seating and chanted obscenities on Saturday stirred memories of that Rangers match. It was ugly, and greater the irony should the complaints against Brand emanate from those penned in by police and stewards deployed in force to the far end of the ground. It is a pity action was not taken earlier. An hour before the match, hordes of Aberdeen supporters, many of them drunk, disembarked from buses while police stood chatting on corners. “If the police would do what they’re paid to, instead of standing, talking,” muttered a marching steward into his walkie-talkie. Despite the Brand incident, the real resentment occurred earlier. Having been booked for a foul on David Fernandez on the quarter hour, Aberdeen’s Darren Young was dismissed 10 minutes from the interval for a repeat offence on the Spaniard… Denmark will play Scotland in a friendly on Wednesday, Aug 21 at Hampden Park. It is the first meeting between the two nations since March 1998 and will take place two weeks before Scotland travel to the Faroe Islands for the first Euro 2004 qualifying match. Denmark have yet to arrange their fixture schedule in Group Two. The Under-21 teams will play each other the previous night. Scotland have already lined up a friendly with Nigeria in Aberdeen next month and are planning a tour in May to Hong Kong. Manager Berti Vogts is believed to be lining up matches against World Cup finalists, South Korea and Turkey.

UEFA step in over England’s Euro ties
Telegraph.co.uk – Mar 27, 2002
With security in mind, the Football Association did not want England to travel to Istanbul for the last or penultimate fixture with, perhaps, qualification on the line. There is no chance of a side having to play their first four ties at home and the last four away, but it could mean an England v Turkey clash late in the schedule. UEFA plan to introduce a `silver goal’ for the 2003 Champions League final at Old Trafford.

Vogts hands Hibs star Caldwell perfect tonic for derby misery
Edinburgh Evening News – Mar 19, 2002
” Caldwell was delighted at the emphasis Vogts appears to be putting on youth. He said: “It’s a young squad but I think that is the way we have to go. ” Vogts revealed he’s looking even further ahead, convinced Scotland possess the resources not only to reach the finals of Euro 2004 but the World Cup finals in his home country two years later, as he pencilled in Hibs’ O’Connor. With the five strikers named for France having mustered a mere three goals in 17 appearances between them, Vogts said: “O’Connor is an interesting player, he’s big and strong – a player to watch. ” Meanwhile, Vogts reckons he has inherited the best midfield in Britain after coaxing Paul Lambert out of international retirement. The Celtic midfielder and Barry Ferguson are set to team up in the friendly. Vogts believes the combination of Lambert and the Rangers captain in the middle of the park is so lethal that even Sven-Goran Eriksson’s England side cannot compare.

Ferguson’s ‘no’ to new boss was predictable
Edinburgh Evening News – Mar 21, 2002
Five of the seven midfielders he has chosen (young Stephen Hughes is exempt from this criticism as he’s uncapped as yet) have amassed 82 caps between them but a miserly total of three goals, two of which were claimed by former Hearts skipper Colin Cameron. And, indeed, Paul Lambert, who will captain the side in the Stade de France, has played 28 times for his country and has yet to score. Not the most convincing of statistics to quell the Tartan Army’s fears that next Wednesday night could prove a rather uncomfortable evening given the array of talent at the disposal of Vogts’ counterpart, Roger Lemerre. Just one look at the players available to Lemerre is enough to make you shudder – Henry, Petit, Wiltord, Desailly, Candela, Pires, Trezeguet, Zidane – no, no, stop, that’s enough. Like any highly-successful side, the French team is laden with individuals capable of scoring and Vogts knows he’ll have to add a killer touch if Scotland are to qualify, as he expects, for both Euro 2004 in Portugal and the next World Cup in his homeland, Germany, two years later. Hence his decision to turn his back on the Edinburgh derby last weekend to watch Duncan Ferguson in action for Everton against Fulham, the coach hoping he might persuade the towering striker to let bygones be bygones and so return to the international fold. Rather than make the trip to Merseyside, however, Vogts could probably have learned the outcome by telephoning Ferguson, who is still smarting eight years later over the SFA decision that he had to complete the 12-match ban imposed on him for an assault on Jock McStay of Raith Rovers after serving a three-month prison sentence for the offence committed as a Rangers player… Not the most convincing of statistics to quell the Tartan Army’s fears that next Wednesday night could prove a rather uncomfortable evening given the array of talent at the disposal of Vogts’ counterpart, Roger Lemerre. Just one look at the players available to Lemerre is enough to make you shudder – Henry, Petit, Wiltord, Desailly, Candela, Pires, Trezeguet, Zidane – no, no, stop, that’s enough. Like any highly-successful side, the French team is laden with individuals capable of scoring and Vogts knows he’ll have to add a killer touch if Scotland are to qualify, as he expects, for both Euro 2004 in Portugal and the next World Cup in his homeland, Germany, two years later. Hence his decision to turn his back on the Edinburgh derby last weekend to watch Duncan Ferguson in action for Everton against Fulham, the coach hoping he might persuade the towering striker to let bygones be bygones and so return to the international fold. Rather than make the trip to Merseyside, however, Vogts could probably have learned the outcome by telephoning Ferguson, who is still smarting eight years later over the SFA decision that he had to complete the 12-match ban imposed on him for an assault on Jock McStay of Raith Rovers after serving a three-month prison sentence for the offence committed as a Rangers player. Ferguson’s bitterness didn’t prevent him playing for Scotland against Austria and Estonia after those events but he has since steadfastly refused to do an about-turn. You can understand Vogts’ hope that he might change Ferguson’s mind but bringing a player, now 30, back into the fold would surely have been a retrograde step.

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