More than a month ago I wrote a post about England’s lack of creativity. This post was based on the Euro’s and England’s World Cup qualification match against Slovakia. This past week I watched both qualification matches and this made me thinking. How is it possible such a big football country, with one of the best leagues in the world, plays without a good creative attacking midfielder. I think I know what’s the problem and will explain it in this post.
England’s lack of creativity
The Premier League is one of the best might be even the best league in the world. Some of the best football players in the world play in the Premier League. This is also a part of the problem. Let’s take a look at the current top 7 of the Premier League and their creative midfield players.
- Manchester City: Kevin de Bruyne, David Silva
- Tottenham Hotspur: Christian Eriksen
- Arsenal: Mesut Ozil
- Liverpool: Phillippe Coutinho
- Everton: …
- Manchester United: Juan Mata, Henrikh Mhkitaryan
- Chelsea: Eden Hazard, Willian
I don’t see any creative midfielders in Everton’s squad. One thing is really in this list, none of the creative midfield players in the top of the Premier League is English. This is the big issue for the English national teams. There can be several reasons for this issue. English teams are scouting young talented players from all over the world at a young age. The youth academies are filled with foreign players. This means the foreign players can stand in the way of their English competitors. Creative players are always the first players to getting noticed.
Another possible reason for this issue can be the original English style of play. English football is famous for the kick-and-rush, so there is no room for creative players at midfield. Arsene Wenger was the first coach who tried to inject an own style of play and Pep Guardiola is taking it to the next level. I hope English football can benefit from these foreign influences and will train more creative players. The national team can really use some creative players.