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As England face San Marino with Rooney as skipper, will fans be short changed?


Football News 24/7
It may be the Rooney factor and the news that Waye Rooney would skipper England against San Marino on Friday night which seems to have at least hit a note with England fans. Supporters of the Three Lions has responded by snapping up the last few tickets this week.

England Manager Roy Hodgson said: 'I'd like to thank the supporters once again on behalf of the England team for your wonderful support.

'This is only my third match in charge at Wembley but I know that it is set to be another huge crowd and that is a great tribute to the magnificent support the national team enjoys in this country, it is something I am proud to be part of, and certainly not something anyone takes for granted.

'It has a terrific impact on players to have a passionate home support turning out and backing them all the way, which hopefully can help us along this qualification campaign.'

England's last qualifier, a 1-1 draw with Ukraine last month, was watched by a crowd of 68,102 - the lowest Wembley crowd for an international since just under 58,000 attended a World Cup qualifier with Andorra at the height of a Tube strike in June 2009.

San Marino, who have won one match in their history, are ranked joint 207th in the FIFA Rankings with Bhutan and the Turks & Caicos Islands and are managed by a PE Teacher, and have just one professional in their squad.

Nothing more than a high scoring win will do, and the visitors are 25/1 just to score a goal. Games against them and to a lesser extent the likes of Andorra, Luxemburg etc are so one sided-as to be of no merit for the spectator or viewer in our opinion.

As Joe Ross of betting website footyinsider told us:

'If all the sides in England's group are expected to beat San Marino home and away then it becomes a shooting gallery with most goals perhaps deciding qualification.

'Can it be right that goas against a pub team in all but name may well decide whether England qualify or not for the finals?

'In truth, whilst FIFA have shied against having different grades of national representation, the reality is that these gams are so one- sided as to lose their meaning. Football is about uncertainty and the 90,000 plus fans heading for Wembley know the result already. That can't be good as a spectacle or for the competition as a whole.'


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