TALKING SPORT - Let’s not be turnips against Swedes this time

WELL after much hype and expectation, the Euros are underway, and we’ve had a look at every single one of the 16 competing nations.

We’ve seen the good (Germany, Russia), the bad (Czech Republic, Ireland) and the ugly (insert own gag).

And we’ve also seen England get off to a decent start with a 1-1 draw against strongly-fancied France.

As performances go it wasn’t much to write home about, but it did the job.

Which is pretty much all we can expect from Roy Hodgson and his men after being parachuted into the job at the 11th hour.

I still think he’d have more chance if he’d gone with other personnel – Ferdinand, Richards, Carrick – but that’s for another day (the day after we get knocked out).

For now, all we can do is get behind the boys and hope that the complete lack of expectation this time round can act in our favour.

If England can remain in the competition by the time Wayne Rooney comes back into the fray for the third group game, anything is possible.

ON the subject of national coaches picking the wrong players, I can’t have been the only one to have thumbed through Steve McNamara’s England squad for Saturday’s game with the Exiles and come to one conclusion: He’s missed Mike McIlorum off the list.

There can be no other explanation for the omission of one of the main reasons behind Wigan’s sparkling form this term.

BEING a relative newcomer to Twitter, I’m still at the stage of thinking it’s the best thing since slice bread.

It’s proving an entertaining way of keeping up with sporting news, gossip and humour.

And it also allows you to enjoy watching other people airing their dirty washing in public.

Take last week, when England RL skipper Jamie Peacock and ex-GB captain Garry Schofield got into an incredible slanging match.

“The far slob @GarrySchofield6 won’t answer his phone when I ring to give him my opinion of him,” moaned Peacock.

“I missed @JamiePeacock10’s call because I was polishing my Golden Boot,” replied Schofield.

Comedy. Gold.

FOOTBALL fans were warned to be wary of the policing and stewarding at the Euros.

But whoever made the call to ban the official England band from using their instruments during the French game has my total backing.

ENGLAND’S Paul Casey has been ruled out of this week’s US Open through injury, with Andy Zhang taking his place.

Nothing out of the ordinary, you might think, until you realise China-born, Florida-based Zhang is just 14 years of age.

That’s right, 14.

When I was 14, my major sporting ambition was to become the first kid in Shevington Moor to ‘complete’ my Italia ‘90 World Cup Panini sticker album.