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England’s World Cup Dream Ends in Heartbreak

So, football isn’t coming home – defeat to Croatia 2-1 in extra time. You can argue the England performance in this World Cup on two contrasting levels.

First, we did far better than anyone expected – which we did. Some terrific performances along the way. Lots to build on with all the young players coming through.

Second, we beat nobody any good – Tunisia, Panama, lost to Belgium’s reserves, Colombia and Sweden. We had a huge slice of luck, with Spain and Germany, not getting through our side of the draw. But you can argue we deserved that down the years in the wake of previous World Cup outrages such as cheat Diego Maradona’s Hand of God and Frank Lampard’s disallowed ‘goal’ in South Africa when it was miles over the line.

Ironic that Gareth Southgate goes out as a player at the semi-final stage of Euro 96 and goes out at as a manager at the semi-final stage of World Cup 2018. His performance in Russia was over-hyped and now, one suspects, he will be over-criticised. All too often in this tournament we have sat back and sought to defend a lead when attack is always the best form of defence. And so it proved against Croatia.

Ahead from the 5th minute via a great free kick by Kieran Trippier, we missed the opportunity to kill it off with Harry Kane and Jesse Lingard fluffing wonderful chances. We were all over them in the first half, totally dominant.

Then second half we gradually went deeper and deeper, allowed them to play, tried to defend our advantage ridiculously far out, and payed the price. Goals by Perisic in the 68th minute and Mandzukic in the second period of extra time. Southgate’s use of substitutes, not for the first time, was appalling. Not getting them on soon enough and ending up with ten men – how do you do that? And was the composition of the team ever right?

Dele Alli never really imposed himself, Lingard was mostly unconvincing and Kyle Walker was always uncomfortable playing centre back – responsible for the Perisic goal. Raheem Sterling stretches defences with his blinding pace but can’t score at international level and constantly runs up blind alleys. It left Kane isolated. No creative midfielder in the role of Luka Modric. The big positives were John Stones, Harry Maguire, Trippier and Jordan Pickford, a base to work off.

England now play Belgium again in the third and fourth placed play-off on Saturday, and will probably lose because the Belgians are far more skilful and our boys will be out on their feet. The “final” was France v Belgium.

Prediction for Sunday’s France v Croatia showdown, 4-1 to France. Sadly, we will not be seeing the expression on Novichok Putin’s face had he been handing the trophy to England!

With the World Cup all but over, the focus will soon return to the upcoming Premier League season. If you would like to enjoy a match in style at the home of your favourite team, then why not indulge in a VIP football hospitality experience?

With premium packages and facilities available at each of the Premier League’s greatest clubs, there is sure to be something just right for you. Discover our most popular match by match hospitality offers below:

Chelsea Hospitality

Tottenham Hotspur Hospitality

Liverpool Hospitality

England leave it late against Tunisia in World Cup opener

Harry Kane pulled it out of the fire as England beat Tunisia 2-1 with a late injury-time strike.

The victory, plus three more points against Panama on Sunday, should see England through to the next stage of the World Cup.
Hopefully, all set fair for a showdown with Belgium a week on Thursday to decide who tops the group.

It took two old-fashioned England-style goals – corners headed on by first John Stones and then Harry Maguire saw Kane free and converting the opportunities.

His first with the boot, the second a clever header.

England made hard work of it – started magnificently and could arguably have been three or four up in the first 30 minutes.
But they spurned the chances, Jesse Lingard being the main culprit, and one feared the Three Lions might suffer for it.

And they did when Kyle Walker, a wing back playing centre back, was adjudged to have fouled his man in the penalty area with a wandering elbow. Sassi scored from the spot.

England were then aggrieved that two rugby tackles on Kane in the box went unpunished by an ineffective referee – disappointing because the men in the middle have been generally good so far. Where was the VAR system when England needed it?
For long periods of the second half a stuffy but toothless Tunisia looked like they would scrape an undeserved draw.
Cue Captain Kane to the rescue.

Kane, Henderson, Trippier and Stones were top quality for England. But Sterling lacked effectiveness and the laboured Dele Alli, seemingly injured, should have been pulled off long before he eventually was – a poser why Gareth Southgate failed to act earlier.

The manager will also be baffled how England could be so fluent in the first half and so ineffective in the second.
Plenty to work on but we are off to a flyer.

The Belgium game now looks like being a cracker. Especially as the Belgians easily beat Panama 3-0 with a beauty from Dries Mertens and two from Romelu Lukaku. Panama look as if they will be the whipping boys of the group. England must make sure they put them away, then bring on the Belgians.

Are you looking to watch England v Belgium in style next Thursday? Join Darren Farley and Peter Shilton at the Holiday Inn Birmingham with Eventmasters World Cup Live Screening.

Enjoy the occasion in style with our superb corporate hospitality package. With a delicious four-course luncheon to savour, cash bar and entertainment from the beloved Gary Newbon, Football Legends, including Peter Shilton OBE, and leading football impressionist Darren Farley, this package certainly promises to create a memorable experience for all.

 

Charity scores the winner at our England Live Screening Event

It won’t only be England strikers grabbing the headlines this summer. Charity will also be netting a winner on Thursday 28th June, thanks to our charitable live screening of England’s group stage match against Belgium.

Held in the Holiday Inn Birmingham City Centre on Smallbrook Queensway, the soon to be sold out event looks set to provide a spectacular blend of entertainment, sport and fundraising. With a live performance from celebrity football impressionist, Darren Farley, alongside entertainment hosted by Sky Sports presenter, Gary Newbon, and Guest of Honour, Peter Shilton OBE, there will certainly be much for guests to enjoy.

 The Entertainment

Famous for his hilarious impressions of football icons including Steven Gerrard, Harry Kane and Wayne Rooney, Darren Farley is a much-loved figure in the world of football, and we can’t wait to see him perform live.

He will be joined by sporting icons including England’s most capped player Peter Shilton OBE, Aston Villa’s European Cup winning goal scorer Peter Withe and Premier League referee Andre Marriner. Alongside host Gary Newbon, with many years of experience between them, this impressive roster will be providing analysis to ensure guests get the most out of the evening.

The Match

A crucial game in England’s World Cup campaign, this will be England’s final game in the group stages, and it is looking to be their toughest. The final overall game of the group, the match will hopefully see both teams at two wins apiece, making this an exciting nail-biter of a match to decide who had an easier route to the final. Whatever the result, the event will be backing our boys with an unabashedly patriotic atmosphere to the whole evening.

The Nominated Charities

The Eventmasters Foundation will be raising money for a number of charities throughout the course of the evening, with the help of our sister company, the Silent Auction Events Company. The nominated charities are;

LoveBrum

LoveBrum is located in the heart of Birmingham and supports under-publicised initiatives across the region, designed to help provide meaningful change to citizens through financial support and fundraising efforts. Recently, LoveBrum has supported Birmingham Blaze FC, a initiative to provide a safe welcoming environment to LGBT youth looking to play football, as well as Stepping Stones Global, a charity that provides support to adults suffering from mental health issues, and the Birmingham Museums Trust.

Scotty’s Little Soldiers

Scotty’s Little Soldiers provides support to the children of fallen service personnel, providing support through holiday breaks and gifts at difficult times of the year, as well as providing counselling and support to struggling families.

Queen Elizabeth Hospital Birmingham Charity

The QEHB charity supports patients, families and staff at their hospitals by providing ‘added extras’ that are over and above that which is provided by the NHS.

This can be any number of things, from cutting edge radiation treatment and research grants, to long term initiatives like bereavement support for military families, to small things like toys for young patients. The Charity needs your help because these things are simply not available through the NHS; this exemplary care and cutting edge technology relies on donations and fundraising events like our silent auction to continue providing support to patients in Birmingham.

The charity holds a special place in the heart of Eventmasters CEO, Denise Sheasby, who was a former sister at the hospital. 

2018 World Cup Warm-up – England V Nigeria Review

For the first half at Wembley it felt like a new England, a vindication of nearly two years of work from Gareth Southgate trying to lift the burden of history from these players.

England walked away with the win, even after a second half resurgence from a seemingly inspired Nigeria. In a week of headlines dominated by Raheem Sterling and Nigeria’s eye catching new kit, it was refreshing to see the game itself in the spotlight.

England started very brightly, coming close with a few early crosses, before Chelsea defender Gary Cahill celebrated his return to England’s squad by opening the scoring with a powerful header after only seven minutes. It was a triumphant return for Cahill, back in the squad in place of Harry Maguire. While the Leicester man may hold the edge in terms of passing ability (A key attribute for Southgate), Cahill showed he can be a big threat on set pieces, an area that England could possibly exploit during the World Cup.

England’s total first-half domination was emphasized when captain Harry Kane scored his eighth goal in his last seven appearances. Kane struck from outside the area just six minutes before the interval when Nigeria keeper Francis Uzoho allowed his 18-yard shot to slip in. The 19 year old really should have saved the effort, but for Kane its yet another reminder of his value to the side. Alongside Kyle Walker he stands out as the world class talent in the England squad, and thus, if England are to have a successful campaign in Russia, you would think Kane has to play a leading role.

Southgate, however, will be pleased by the pace and movement shown by his attacking players in a thoroughly convincing opening 45 minutes.

Arsenal’s Alex Iwobi gave Nigeria’s thousands of fans inside Wembley hope two minutes after the break with a crisp finish but England – who had Raheem Sterling booked for diving – closed out the victory in relatively untroubled fashion. Nigeria had a few more chances to level, but unlike against Italy two months ago, England held out for a morale boosting win.

“The most important thing I do in the next six weeks is to protect the players” – Southgate

England’s preparations continue with another friendly against Costa Rica at Elland Road on Thursday, where it is anticipated that Southgate will look to rotate his side to allow the likes of Vardy, Loftus-Cheek and Alexander-Arnold to get some minutes under their belt. The national team has played at Elland Road twice before, a 3-3 draw with Sweden in June 1995 was preceded by defeat against Italy in 2002.

They will look to better that record this week, and no doubt Gareth Southgate will be hopeful of a performance to get the fans dreaming again, ahead of a big summer in Russia.

Eventmasters are delighted to be hosting a screening of the much anticipated England vs Belgium match in this months World Cup. Taking place on 28th June, this is your chance to enjoy a brilliant match in first class hospitality. Ex-Sky Sports Presenter Gary Newbon will be master of ceremonies, with England’s most Capped player, and Italia 90 hero Peter Shilton also in attendance.

Savour England v Belgium in Style with Eventmasters’ Live Screening

Join Eventmasters at the Holiday Inn, Birmingham this June for a marvellous live screening as England face Belgium in their final World Cup group fixture. Enjoy the game in fine style as you and guests sit down to enjoy a sumptuous four-course luncheon along with fabulous entertainment from Eventmasters’ Sporting Ambassador Gary Newbon.

The popular Sky Sports Presenter will be joined by a number of esteemed football legends, including England’s most capped International, Peter Shilton, who will be on hand to make your day a memorable one. Be sure to enjoy one of the football highlights of the year with our splendid hospitality package.

Peter Shilton - England v Belgium Live Screening Hospitality

Rub shoulders with England Legend, Peter Shilton.

Details of this year’s Live Screening hospitality package can be found below:


  • Superb four-course luncheon
  • Entertainment from Eventmasters Sporting Ambassador, Gary Newbon, with Guest of Honour, Peter Shilton OBE
  • Live screening of World 2018 fixture: England vs Belgium
  • Cash bar
  • Silent auction in aid of a nominated charity
  • Individual places – private tables also available

Sample Menu

The football action certainly won’t be the only thing whetting the appetite this year; our fabulous four-course luncheon menu will be sure to satisfy even the most refined palate. A sample menu can be seen below:

Starter
Free range chicken and pistachio terrine, apricot jam and toasted crostini

Main
Sirloin of Finest 21 day aged Scottish beef, Yorkshire pudding, roast potatoes and seasonal vegetables

Dessert
Sticky toffee pudding with toffee sauce and ice cream

To Finish
Platter of cheese and biscuits


Those looking to book hospitality for a larger corporate group can be accommodated on tables of 10 and 12. Alternatively, places can be booked on a shared table basis, within a minimum booking of 2.

Make it an experience to remember this June with our fabulous Live Screening hospitality packages. Please click here for further details.