Previous
SC Freiburg
Hertha Berlin
2
2
FT
Game Details
Elche
Eibar
0
2
FT
Game Details
Bordeaux
Evian Thonon Gaillard
2
1
FT
Game Details
Real Salt Lake
Colorado Rapids
2:00 AM GMT
Game Details
Tijuana
Santos
2:30 AM GMT
Game Details
FC Arsenal Tula
Mordovia Saransk
0
1
FT
Game Details
Elche
Eibar
0
2
FT
Game Details
SC Freiburg
Hertha Berlin
2
2
FT
Game Details
Bordeaux
Evian Thonon Gaillard
2
1
FT
Game Details
Partick Thistle
St Mirren
1
2
FT
Game Details
Carpi
Trapani
2
2
FT
Game Details
Spezia
Virtus Entella
1
0
FT
Game Details
FC Erzgebirge Aue
St Pauli
3
0
FT
Game Details
TSV Eintracht Braunschweig
SV Darmstadt 98
2
0
FT
Game Details
VfR Aalen
SV Sandhausen
0
1
FT
Game Details
AJ Auxerre
AC Ajaccio
1
1
FT
Game Details
Ajaccio GFCO
Dijon FCO
2
0
FT
Game Details
Brest
Arles
1
0
FT
Game Details
Chateauroux
AS Nancy Lorraine
2
5
FT
Game Details
Créteil
Clermont Foot
2
2
FT
Game Details
Niort
Valenciennes
3
0
FT
Game Details
Sochaux
Nimes
2
0
FT
Game Details
Stade Laval
Angers
3
2
FT
Game Details
Tours
Orléans
4
3
FT
Game Details
Willem II Tilburg
NAC Breda
2
1
FT
Game Details
Achilles '29
FC Oss
2
2
FT
Game Details
FC Den Bosch
Helmond Sport
3
0
FT
Game Details
Fortuna Sittard
FC Eindhoven
0
2
FT
Game Details
Jong PSV
Sparta Rotterdam
0
2
FT
Game Details
MVV Maastricht
De Graafschap
0
1
FT
Game Details
SC Stormvogels Telstar
Jong FC Twente
1
1
FT
Game Details
VVV Venlo
Almere City
3
2
FT
Game Details
Guimaraes
Paços de Ferreira
1
1
LIVE 82'
Game Details
FC Arsenal Tula
Mordovia Saransk
0
1
FT
Game Details
Eskisehirspor K
Genclerbirligi
0
2
FT
Game Details
Royal Charleroi SC
Zulte-Waregem
2
1
FT
Game Details
Randers FC
Silkeborg IF
1
0
FT
Game Details
IFK
Gefle IF
4
0
FT
Game Details
SK Brann
Sandnes Ulf
1
1
FT
Game Details
Athlone Town FC
Bohemians
0
0
LIVE HT
Game Details
Bray
St Patricks
2
4
FT
Game Details
Dundalk
Derry City
6:45 PM GMT
Game Details
Real Salt Lake
Colorado Rapids
2:00 AM GMT
Game Details
Morelia
UNAM
ESPNDeportes 2:30 AM GMT
Game Details
Tijuana
Santos
2:30 AM GMT
Game Details
Quilmes
Lanús
11:30 PM GMT
Game Details
Colón de Santa Fe
San Martín de San Juan
12:00 AM GMT
Game Details
Atlante
Mineros de Zacatecas
12:00 AM GMT
Game Details
Coras Tepic
Dorados de Sinaloa
1:30 AM GMT
Game Details
América RN
Portuguesa de Desportos
10:30 PM GMT
Game Details
Joinville
Goianiense
10:30 PM GMT
Game Details
Ceará
Avaí
12:50 AM GMT
Game Details
General Díaz
Guaraní
11:00 PM GMT
Game Details
Nagoya Grampus Eight
Vantforet Kofu
6:00 AM GMT
Game Details
Atlético Nacional
Deportivo Cali
12:45 AM GMT
Leg 2Aggregate: 2 - 1
Game Details
Next
Jun 20, 2006

A view to a thrill?

COLOGNE, Stadion Koln -- Given the media furore surrounding ticket security for the 2006 World Cup it was with some trepidation and fear of reprisal that I decided to try and blag my way into the England v Sweden group decider in Cologne on Tuesday night.

This is not normal recourse you understand, but FIFA had granted my media accreditation but bungled my match ticket. The FIFA official in Media Centre assured me there was no way I was going to get a ticket, on stand-by or otherwise.

A cheeky inquiry about the chances of scaling the fence didn't go down too well and when I asked where else my pass would allow me to wander his answer was simple: "Nowhere! But you can try. You never know!"

On my dejected walk out of the stadium complex towards one of the three big screens the city had erected for the other ticketless thousands I decided to try my luck at getting access to the stadium.

My accreditation got me through the first line of security, body pat downs and metal detectors and then a timely goal in the Germany game allowed me to saunter into the stands unnoticed by the few officials scattered about watching the hosts beat Ecuador on TV.

Whilst awaiting discovery and listening to the rehearsal of announcements and national anthems (complete with stand-in team and mascots) four hours passed and following a bout of hastily conducted musical chairs with latecomers to the media stand the game was on.

Surrounded by a gaggle of equally desperate snoops up in the gantry area it was difficult to look nonchalant as England easily out played the Swedes and took a deserved lead through a Joe Cole wonder strike before the break.

England's play deserved more, but an impressive performance from the much-criticised Owen Hargreaves in the anchor role helped smooth over the lack of another goal.

The use of a holding player and the return of Wayne Rooney to the starting line-up had certainly helped England perform to a higher level and the half-time chit chat between the fans was hugely optimistic.

However, after being shuffled off to another restricted view during the interval by possibly the only official who had not entered into the spirit of things in watching the game, it was difficult to see the second-half behind a score of 'Zlatan' shirted Swedes and St George top-hat bedecked Englanders, and just as well as England duly failed to turn up.

Marcus Allback headed Sweden level after England had failed to deal with a series of corners and set pieces - as predicted by Sweden coach Lars Lagerback in his pre-match comments - and Sol Campbell replaced Rio Ferdinand to shore up the defence before Steven Gerrard headed England into an unlikely lead late on.

With the 'top-hats' still consoling their new found brothers the 'Zlatans' (their idol was out injured by the way), Sweden scored a deserved equaliser in the dying seconds after hitting both crossbar and post in previous attacks.

The full-time whistle blew, the scoreline 2-2, and England again failed to beat Sweden - a feat they haven't managed since 1968 - but still managed to top the group. The final score was as predictable as England's performance: excellent in the first-half and poor in the second.

However, the only problem to really vex England manager Sven Goran Eriksson was what looked like a bad injury to Michael Owen. The Newcastle striker was stretchered off in the first minute, but even the absence of the out-of-form forward forcibly solves Eriksson's selection problem now Rooney is fit.

The Manchester United striker should partner Peter Crouch in England's match with Ecuador in the last 16, and despite Hargreaves' excellent performance he will surely find himself on the bench as the anchorman role is once again discarded. Gerrard and Frank Lampard will have yet another chance to gel in the centre of midfield.

England did the job they needed to do in the Stadion Koln, but nothing more. However, it was good to see the England fans wishing Sweden all the best against Germany... in fact it was a miracle to see the game at all.

• Email newsdesk@soccernet.com with your thoughts.

Comments

Use a Facebook account to add a comment, subject to Facebook's Terms of Service and Privacy Policy. Your Facebook name, photo & other personal information you make public on Facebook will appear with your comment, and may be used on ESPN's media platforms. Learn more.