England vs. Algeria World Cup 2010 Live Blog: Three Lions Held To 0-0 Draw

Owen WatsonCorrespondent IJune 18, 2010

CAPE TOWN, SOUTH AFRICA - JUNE 18:  Frank Lampard of England reacts during the 2010 FIFA World Cup South Africa Group C match between England and Algeria at Green Point Stadium on June 18, 2010 in Cape Town, South Africa.  (Photo by Doug Pensinger/Getty Images)
Doug Pensinger/Getty Images

Oh, and remember: Keep calm and carry on

21:25: That's it from me, definitely more questions than answers from England's perspective, a disappointing result and performance. Still, I hope you've enjoyed the live blog a bit more than the action...and make sure you check out some of the other content BR has to offer. Adiós!

21:23: Brief word of praise for Algeria, they put in a disciplined and robust performance. Set out to stifle England and were ultimately more successful than USA. Their final group game with USA will be interesting...a win over the United States could still see them scrape into the knock-out stages.

21:21: Not exactly stunning from England, but they still control their own destiny. A win over Slovenia in the final group game will still see England qualify. But it's far from convincing and the Three Lions struggled to get Rooney into the game.

20:20: One last corner to England...but it's too far for Crouch and it's all over, it's finished 0-0. And England are being booed off by their own fans!! To make matters worse, Rooney is caught by the cameras lashing out at the fans' criticism. Oh dear.

21:19: Capello and Beckham getting animated on the sidelines as a decision goes against Rooney. Time's almost up for England.

21:17: Long range snapshot from Defoe spins over the bar...then some fancy footwork from Crouch on the right flank in the next attack.

21:16: Bougherra is down in the England penalty area, eating up what little time is left on the clock. Can England steal a goal in the three minutes of added time? Capello has rolled all his dice, so to say, it's up to the players now.

21:15: Is this performance a symptom of Capello's Italian background? Feeling in my household is 1-0 seen as a "good result" in Italy. To be fair, although Algeria have been decent defensively they've never looked like a genuine threat going forward. 

21:11: Surprisingly more people are backing the draw now...0-0 with five minutes left? I wonder why that is.

21:10: Has been a disappointing showing from England, and Capello is going for it...bringing Crouch on for Barry. Statement of intent from the manager, and a bold move. England would definitely qualify if they drew this game and beat Slovenia. Rooney moves out to the left wing and Gerrard moves into central midfield.

21:08: Where do people stand on the Theo Walcott issue? Would he be a better option in a game like this than Wright-Phillips?

21:06: Cameras have spotted Capello having a quick word with Gerrard as Algeria make their second substitution...are we going to see a change in shape from England in the final minutes?

21:05: This slight surge from England has seen them collect a few more votes in the poll. 61.5 per cent of you think England are going to find a goal in the last ten minutes...let's hope so.

21:04: For a split second you could hear the England fans in proud chorus there...but not for long, the vuvuzelas are back now - don't worry!

21:02: HAND BALL!!! Shouts come in from the England players but in truth it's a bit optimistic...Defoe has definitely had an impact, though, some good movement and running into the channels is stretching Algeria at the back. Positive change.

21:01: Opening for Defoe there...instant impact and a good combination in midfield. It all closed up Defoe before he could get a shot on target, but with a better touch he might have got a shot off.

21:00: It is Heskey for England, Algeria also make a change with Boudebouz being replaced by Abdoun.

20:59: Is it wrong that I'm checking my facebook while the game is on? Don't think I'm missing much...oh, and Defoe is ready to come on. Heskey coming off?

20:55: Should England be happy with a draw? They can still win the group if they pick up a point, but it wouldn't fill you with confidence going into the final game. Especially if they don't score.

20:53: Not sure I can quite believe my eyes, are there only 23 minutes left? England have done nothing this half.

20:50: Terry, Terry, Terry...you aren't with Wayne Bridge's girlfriend now, it isn't time to slip one in! Awful back-pass from the former England captain, but luckily James was quick to react and managed to clear under pressure.

20:49: Thankfully Capello understands it's probably unwise to reduce the number of forwards on the pitch when you need a goal, and Lennon is the one to depart. Not a great showing by the Spurs winger.

20:48: Wright-Phillips ready to come on. Commentators are hoping Heskey goes off and Gerrard moves up top. Are England the only country in the world that would happily take off a forward when they need a goal? Got to be the only team that would throw on a midfielder in place!!

20:46: Things have settled down after that brief flurry of activity...and if you're wondering what happened with that free-kick, Algeria drilled it well wide.

20:44: First booking goes to Carragher and he is out of the next game against Slovenia. Capello might get a chance to test out Dawson now, so at least I'll have something to smile about...unless Upson plays.

20:43: Good challenge from Johnson there, Belhadj would have been through on goal had it not been for the right-back's challenge.

20:42: Algeria are all over the place right now, yet Rooney has just dawdled in possession and spoiled the break. Will England rue failing to take charge of proceedings in these few minutes?

20:41: Gerrrrardddd what are you doing?!?! England were in there and Gerrard completely wasted the chance, poor decision and terrible execution of the pass. Incredible.

20:40: Just a thought (perhaps tempting fate), but there hasn't been a yellow card yet! Bet the Germans would've loved to have this referee...USA probably wouldn't be complaining either.

20:37: Algeria have come out with a bit of purpose in the second half...will it be short-lived or a sign of things to come?

20:34: Commentators wasting no time in criticising Capello, bit premature if you ask me...after all, Algeria are playing pretty well defensively.

20:33: Quick glance on the old Facebook doesn't make pretty reading...not many happy chappies on there. Apparently one of my mate's available, so someone let Fabio know he has another option!

20:30: Pundits are suggesting bringing Joe Cole on for Heskey and putting Gerrard in behind Rooney. Not the worst shout in the world...looks like England will keep the same 11 for the second half, though.

20:29: Not sure Crouch is the answer, England are struggling to create in midfield so bringing another striker on might not make that big of a difference. Defoe might offer a bit more in the way of movement, and Capello might gamble and bring off Heskey for the Spurs man.

Another option would be to bring off Lampard and bring on a passer like Carrick, but then Lampard has had England's best chance and Carrick doesn't inspire confidence. What we would do for a Theo Walcott or an Adam Johnson for a moment like this...but then, this is what Capello gets paid all that money for.

20:26: Looking to the bench, England don't have a wealth of options in all honesty. I've spoken about Joe Cole, but beyond that we've got people like Peter Crouch, Shaun Wright-Phillips, Jermain Defoe, Michael Carrick and James Milner. Who would you sacrifice?

20:24: As more votes come in, backing for England is dipping. Clearly people haven't been convinced by the first 45 minutes.

20:22: Interesting, the Algerians have had a bit of a surge in the poll...a couple of people obviously thinking that the Desert Foxes will build on their first half display. Not a bad shout based on the action so far.

20:21: The Africans have made it very difficult for England to create chances, setting up with two banks of four (as you'd expect) and squeezing the play when England try and advance. Apart from Lampard's chance and a couple of pot shots from range, England haven't looked dangerous.

20:17: Algeria will be delighted with that first half performance, although England managed to cope with most of their attacking play they still looked like they could catch the Three Lions out down the flanks. Definitely a good half for the Desert Foxes.

20:15: That's it for the first half...Capello looking far from pleased as he trudges down the tunnel. Get them told Fabio!

20:14: Anyone who thought this was going to be a walk in the park is sadly mistaken...and to think I was reading an article online today that was trying to compare England's front-line to Argentina's. Lennon isn't exactly Lionel Messi, and Heskey is looking far from a Gonzalo Higuain.

20:11: Three minutes and stoppages left in the first half and both seem sides seem happy with the way things stand at the moment, England popping the ball around in front of the Algerian defence nicely but can't find an incisive pass.

20:07: England are starting to push now, but time is running out in the half...if they could grab one before the half-time whistle it might rattle the Algerians. The first goal (if it comes) might make a big difference in this one.

20:06: Despite the slow start from England, most seem to be confident that the Three Lions will see this one through. 67 per cent of you have England winning this one...not sure if they're basing that on the action, though.

20:03: Can Algeria keep this up for 90 minutes? They're putting an awful lot of work in to contain England, as well as trying to break on the counter...you get the feeling that they might run out of legs as the game unfolds.

20:01: CHANCE!! Good passage of play from England, cross from Lennon was only half-cleared and it fell to Lampard. His shot was good, but it was a bit behind him and he had to hook it slightly - couldn't find it's way past M'Bohil. That's better from England.

19:59: Wondering if Capello should have gone with Joe Cole on the right-wing, Aaron Lennon has provided very little in way of attacking impetus. Gerrard has shown flashes coming inside but the Spurs man has been anonymous going forward so far. At least Joe Cole offers some craft.

19:57: To be fair, Barry is putting some good defensive work in for England...has already cut out a couple of crosses into the box. The problem is breaking down Algeria.

19:56: Algeria have been solid so far, impressive discipline from the Africans.

19:54: 25 minutes in and it's all a bit edgy for the Three Lions...Rooney having to drop deep into midfield to get a touch, not happy viewing for England fans.

19:51 Algeria just starting to turn the screw here, dare I say it, they're looking the most likely at the moment.

19:49: Rooney just had his first sniff of goal, but his shot was easily blocked. I thought Barry's introduction was supposed to mean Rooney got more of the game? Not working out so far...

19:47: England aren't dominating like you'd expect, it's all been pretty even so far with no meaningful chances. If you were looking for a performance from England, so far you'd be disappointed.

19:43: Wonder what result our friends over the pond will be looking for? An Algerian win would keep their hopes alive and might make the final game a bit tricky for USA, whilst an England win would mean they'd be gunning for a victory against Slovenia to ensure they'd win the group. I'd be supporting England, but then I would be saying that.

19:42: Cameramen seem to be more than a bit interested in the bird that has perched on the top of the Algerian goal...just had a stunning super-slow motion replay. Tells you everything you need to know about the action in general at the moment.

19:40: England living dangerously...James supplied an unconvincing punch to a cross and Johnson was a bit casual with his clearance. Sort it out England.

19:39: Most seem to think that England will pick up three points from this fixture if my straw poll is anything to go by...but then there have only been 4 votes, and that includes mine!

19:38: Only email I've had so far is from HMV offering me some killer deals on CD's...unless there's something with John Barnes in there, I'm not interested

19:37: Poor corner from Algeria there...you'd think they'd want to make the most of set pieces against a side like England. Especially with new centre-backs and a change in goal.

19:35: Oooooooo, Ashley Cole nearly got in there. Nice feet from the Chelsea defender...England looking a lot more balanced than against the USA, maybe that's just me?

19:34: Algeria's keeper Rais M'Bohill just had a dodgy few moments there...almost got caught out from an ambitious effort and then gifted the ball to Rooney. England didn't capitalise and Algeria broke down the right dangerously...decent opening!!

19:32: England just wasted a free-kick out from the left flank, Gerrard put it into the box but Algeria dealt with it comfortably.

19:31: Great result for England this afternoon, leaves the group wide open...three points here would surely mean England would top the group.

19:30: Here we go, just kicked off at the Green Point Stadium...Algeria venturing forward first, donning a lovely lime green kit.

19:27: Last chance for a comfort break before kick-off!

19:24: Just had the England national anthem...princes Harry and William in attendance. Let's hope England put in a regal performance.

19:23: Not happy with Jamie Carragher in defence, I would have gone with Michael Dawson...there's never going to be a better time to blood him! Carragher doesn't have the pace that'll be needed in the latter stages...and why didn't Capello bring Sol Campbell?! Disclaimer: I'm an Arsenal fan.

19:21: Prediction time! Algeria have been talked down by a lot of people in the English media, pointing to disquiet within the camp (especially with the captain being dropped)...I'm not sure I buy it, this might be closer than some people are expecting. I'll go for 2-1 to England with Algeria scoring first, possibly 3-1 if the first goal comes early enough.

19:18: I'm quietly hopeful for this one, the World Cup seems to have kicked up a notch after Spain's shock defeat to Switzerland. Mexico stunned France and left them on the ropes, and Argentina battered South Korea. Will England step up and produce or will Algeria stun everyone and overcome the Three Lions? Whatever happens, let's hope it's not another bore draw!!

19:14: Full England team: James; Johnson, Carragher, Terry, A Cole; Lennon, Lampard, Barry, Gerrard; Heskey, Rooney.

19:12: The other change for England is Gareth Barry coming in for James Milner, with Stephen Gerrard moving out to the left wing to accommodate the Manchester City midfielder. Emile Heskey retains his place up front, with Jermain Defoe staying on the bench. Obviously Ledley King is out injured.

19:10: Algeria team: M'Bohli, Bougherra, Belhadj, Yahia, Kadir, Yebda, Lacen, Halliche, Boudebouz, Ziani, Matmour. Subs: Gaouaoui, Mansouri, Ghezzal, Saifi, Djebbour, Bellaid, Laifaoui, Guedioura, Medjani, Mesbah, Abdoun, Chaouchi.

19:08: Word is that Robert Green has been dropped by England manager Fabio Capello, with David James taking up the position between the posts. It's an interesting one, but I'm firmly in the Joe Hart camp...so either way, I wasn't going to be happy!!

19:05: Despite being an Englishman, I'll try and keep the coverage as objective as possible! USA and Slovenia produced a cracker earlier today, drawing 2-2, meaning a win for either side will put them right in contention..

Evening all, welcome to BR's live coverage of England vs. Algeria. I'll be supplying live updates of the action as it unfolds in South Africa. Feel free to comment as we go along, or you can email me at osgwatson@gmail.com.


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