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The Irish News Archive - June 23 1998: Petrescu pounces to punish slack England

STRIKE ONE...Coventry’s Viorel Moldovan (left) gives Romania the lead against England
The Irish News Archive

World Cup: France '98: Group G: Romania 2 England 1

GLENN Hoddle last night blamed England’s 2-1 World Cup defeat against Romania on poor defending.

Hoddle felt his players could have done better for both Viorel Moldovan’s opening goal on 47 minutes and Dan Petrescu’s last minute winner.

“I’m very disappointed, The two goals we gave away were schoolboy stuff,” he blasted.

“The defending was poor.

“After we worked so hard we felt we might be the team that went on to punish them.

“But we gave away those terrible goals and if you defend like that at this level you’re going to get punished.”

Michael Owen briefly hauled England level with his second goal for his country and Hoddle felt his side had created enough chances to win.

Former England coach Terry Venables echoed Hoddle’s criticisms when he said: “You have to hold your hands up and say the defending was terrible.”

Former England boss Bobby Robson believes Hoddle must now play both Owen and David Beckham, who replaced Ince, from the start against Colombia on Friday.

“It’s a mini-disaster, there’s no denying that,” said Robson. “Glenn now has to think very hard about starting the match with Owen and Beckham.

“The defending on the goals was very, very poor. I still believe England will qualify but it’s obviously much, much tougher now.”

Romania: Stelea (6), Ciubotariu (7), Petrescu (6), Filipescu (7), Gheorghe Popescu (7), Munteanu (6), Galca (7), Hagi (7) (Stinga (6) 73), Gabriel Popescu (6), Ilie (7), Moldovan (7) (Lacatus (5) 87), Stinga (6) (Marinescu (6) 84).

Subs Not Used: Prunea, Stingaciu, Dobos, Selymes, Dulca, Dumitrescu, Niculescu, Craioveanu.

Booked: Hagi, Gheorghe Popescu, Ciubotariu, Marinescu.

Goals: Moldovan 47, Petrescu 90.

England: Seaman (6), Campbell (8), Adams (6), Neville (7), Le Saux (7), Anderton (6), Ince (6) (Beckham (7) 33), Batty (7), Shearer (6), Sheringham (5) (Owen (8) 73), Scholes (6).

Subs Not Used: Flowers, Martyn, Keown, R. Ferdinand, Southgate, Lee, McManaman, Merson, L Ferdinand.

Goals: Owen 83.

Ref: M Batta (France) 7.

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OLIVER Collins yesterday challenged Ulster selectors to justify Oak Leaf player exclusion from the Railway Cup panel earlier this year. Derry’s dismantling of Ulster champions Down on Sunday provided Oliver Collins and his Derry colleagues a platform for debating the non-appearance of players in an Ulster jersey during the provincial series.

Amazingly after Lavey had faced Dunloy in the Ulster club championship, no Derry players cut the grade for the Ulster panel.

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GARY Coleman has declared himself fit for selection as Derry prepare for Sunday’s Ulster championship semi-final against Armagh. But half-back Johnny McGurk has been ruled out of the game.

McGurk was involved in an accidental collision with Enda Gormley during a training session at the weekend. Magherafelt star Gary Coleman was ruled out of Derry’s championship opening round win over Monaghan at Celtic Park due a hamstring injury.

But after having trained on Friday and Saturday and again last night, the versatile Allstar is ready to be counted in for the head-to-head with the Orchard county men.

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