Team GB: Would this team win the Olympics?

by Dexy Longshot

Sunday, July 27th, 2008
 

Scottish and Irish FAs have every right to pour scorn on the idea on the prospect on a Team GB squad for the Olympics; it is an unfortunate setup in sport that when we have a kickabout, we’re our own independent country, but when we’re scooping whatever medals are going at the Games, we have link arms and be all happy-clappy under the Great Britain banner.

Team GB

The very idea of a British football team will create more divisions than it will unite us. It’s impossible to formulate any sort of quotas, especially one based on population ratios of the UK (if we did, English players would make up 5/6ths of the amalgamated squad – hardly fair, is it?). And how would quotas be implemented? Surely for the sake of keeping everyone happy from all corners of the Kingdom, playing a balanced number of players would undermine tactics and securing the correct formation. Taking all this (plus the under-23 rule in the selection of players for an Olympic squad) in to consideration and the whole thing is mired in a political and patriotic mess.

In the meantime though, as we start to assemble our newspaper dream teams for the start of the new season, it does give us a chance to let our minds go walkabout for our own Great Britain fantasy squad. Ignoring the aforementioned age limitations, who would you pick to represent a UK elite team?
My team, for what it’s worth (3-5-2):

 

GK: Taylor (NI)

Strong and solid for Birmingham, Taylor will feel more at home with a more rocksteady defence in front of him. A more positive choice ahead of Paul Robinson.

 

LB: Bale (WAL)

Wales’ hot prospect and with a mean left foot, Bale is bound to make a big impact for Spurs in the coming seasons.

 

DF: Ferdinand (ENG) & DF: Terry (ENG)

The two English rocks at the back, these two simply cannot be ignored. Immense defensive talent.

 

DF: A. Hughes (NI)

Rio and JT will be well supported by Aaron Hughes, who is a lot more versatile and can operate a free role in defence. Superb in the Premiership.

 

RB: Hutton (SCO)

Well, we had to have a Scot at the back, didn’t we? Again another new arrival for Spurs and looks much fresher than Gary Neville.

 

MD: Gerrard (ENG)

Simply unmissable inclusion. While I think Terry should captain England, I think Stevie G would be a better skipper if a Team GB squad existed.

 

MD: Hargreaves (ENG)

An odd choice, but should be able to make the holding role his own in this line-up and is perfect champion of a GB squad, once upon a time being eligible to play for any one of the home nations. Or for Canada. But we’ll gloss over that bit.

 

MD: Koumas (WAL)

The precocious Welsh talent has matured in to a quality midfield playmaker and should operate alongside Gerrard in a way that Frank Lampard can only dream of.

 

ST: Rooney (ENG)

On his day, the best striker in the UK

 

ST: Healey (NI)

A prime example of how a nation without high expectations can produce such a fine talent. Absolutely blistering in the Euro qualifiers, he’s already cemented his place as a legend for his country.

 

Subs

GK: Gordon (SCO)
DF: Caldwell (SCO)
MF: Ramsey (WAL)
MF: Lampard (ENG)
ST : Owen (ENG)

Manager: Alex Ferguson

 

 

 

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  • Stevie

    thats a very diplomatic 11, although there’s not enough Scottish players. Where’s Barry Ferguson or even James McFaden?

    I also think Gordon is a better keeper than Taylor, he makes way to many bloopers for me.

    Not a bad team though, would be interesting to see what how serious the other countries take it though, that will be key

  • http://www.ukfootballfinder.co.uk Darren

    I think we would have a pretty decent under 23 side, that way we could drop the big ego’s from England. It’s still pretty England heavy but we do have a very good under 21 side

    GK Joe Hart (Eng)
    LB Gareth Bale (Wales)
    CB Micah Richards (Eng)
    CB Chris Gunter (Wales)
    RB Jonny Evans (NI)
    RM Aaron Ramsey (Wales)
    CM James Morrison (Sco)
    CM Steven Davis (NI)
    LM Scott Brown (Sco)
    CF Theo Walcott (Eng)
    CF Matt Derbyshire (Eng)

    Manager Paul Ince

  • tef1on

    owen will be using a Zimmer frame in 2012

  • Parks numero uno

    whats the quota on overaged players? because i thought it was only 3? if that is the case jamie’s team wouldnt be able to enter because there is about 5 players over 23.

  • Jamie Farrier

    I put a disclaimer in the passage before I went in to the line-up stating it is in fact a fantasy team, not one eligible under Olympic guidelines but more of GB Dream Team. That’s an excellent Under 23 squad though Darren, while like you say it’s very England-friendly I’m sure it’ll give the other home nations places to fight for in the future.

    Tef1lon – yes, I ought to concede I had doubts about including Owen. I think he’s more of a representative in place of the next big English or British striker we’re still yet to discover between now and the London Games.

  • dexylongshot

    How old is Rooney these days or Dean Ashton & Reo Coker for that matter. Surely they could sneak in.
    I’d have Adam Johnson in midfield over Davis. Possibly Noble and Milner. That’s not to say Theo or Derbyshire are pony, far from, i rate them both highly. I forsee Derbyshire as a new lineker in 5 years time.
    MMM, that may make it a bit 3 Lions based though.

  • Stevie

    Rooney hasn’t been the same player at International level since Euro 2004. So I’d go with a younger option, give them some good experience, because at the end of the day no one cares if we win it, knowing England they probably will. Shades of La Tournua in 1998, when we beat france and Italy before losing 1-0 to Brazil with the tournament was already won!

    So play all the youngest players possible, this well help them mature and develop much quicker.

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