So the big game finally arrived. And now it has passed into the realms of bad memories. What went wrong?
Those still inclined to follow England should not throw in the towel yet: the team drew its first match in 1966, and didn’t even manage a goal. England came close to going out at the group stage in 1986, before finally being undone by the best and worst of Diego Maradona.
Moreover, the USA can field a side with a very good value goalkeeper: their first choice is Tim Howard, who plays in the Premiership with Everton. Toffees’ manager David Moyes and his squad give that league’s best value for money by the proverbial country mile.
But, when all’s said and done, the effect of all those Ingerlundflags was, more or less, zero. There are an awful lot of cheesy looking motahs running around to no avail.
As ever, it will be down to the team. And the manager.