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Mabbutt on England

Posted on 21 June 2002  - 12:00

Tottenham Hotspur (Spurs) Football Club is located in North London. The club is also known as Spurs. Tottenham's home ground is White Hart Lane. The club motto is Audere est Facere (To dare is to do).

Gary Mabbutt believed pre-World Cup that reaching the quarter-finals would be deemed a success for England - but he can't help feeling an opportunity was missed against Brazil.

Sven Goran's Eriksson's men bowed out against the favourites after failing to take advantage of a Ronaldhino's sending off with 33 minutes left.

England failed to create another chance - Teddy Sheringham was helpless after coming on for the last 10 minutes - and went out to a 2-1 deficit.

Spurs legend Gary reflected: "Before the World Cup started the first thing was could we get out of a tough group? There were doubts if we could do that, but I was confident we would.

"If the tournament had gone to plan we would have played France then Brazil.

"I suppose the disappointment is there because we got to the quarter-finals at such a canter.

"We were also playing a Brazil side who have great individuals but aren't a strong unit and if we could have beaten them, the door looked wide open.

"The first half went well, Michael Owen cashed in on a defensive error and it looked ours for the taking. But obviously they hit back with a great goal and then took the lead.

"Ronaldhino was then sent off and normally against 10 men you'd really push on and throw balls into the box, but I felt we let them off the hook a little.

"The players will be devastated and I'm sure they'll feel they could have done more in that last period. If we'd have gone out throwing everything at them, okay, but I think we could have done more. That's the most frustrating thing, we've gone out with a whimper rather than a bark."