Field Hockey - Fih Pro League 2020-21

Discussion in 'General Football & Other Sport' started by Bwood_Horn, Oct 28, 2020.

  1. Bwood_Horn

    Bwood_Horn Squad Player

    She has a wiki page and the Las Leonas wiki squad is based upon the teams that faced Germany. She isn't mentioned in the FIH match reports of the German games: 0-0 (3-2) and the 1-3 hammering (scroll down to the bottom of the page for squads - some members have full biographies). Judging by her surname she's returned to the heimat (there are an awful lot of German language schools in Argentina - most were set-up pre-WWII). Her taking a break from the international squad really doesn't make much senses as the pro-league was set-up to provide year round 'quality' competition for the elite teams...
     
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  2. Smudger

    Smudger Messi's Mad Coach Staff Member

    Thanks Bwood. I know several of the womens team abroad most of them youngsters decided to opt out of representing Argentina for a season or so for unspecified reasons. I just hope given past history with Argentina sides in football and rugby that the players are not excluded because of it from future representation because it would be cutting off the nose to spite the face. I hope they are recalled for the Olympics as these results clearly show they are missed.
     
  3. Bwood_Horn

    Bwood_Horn Squad Player

    I thought that the Rugby Championship and the Tri-Nations had been set-up to provide the Pumas with year round quality opposition?
     
  4. Bwood_Horn

    Bwood_Horn Squad Player

    These matches slipped under the radar - GB hosted Ireland in a return series of 4 'test' uncapped matches at Bisham last week. The hosts came out on top with final scores of 3-1, 4-1, 0-0 and 7-2 in the series. Photos here.

    Good news about the visit of the Germans:

    I'm assuming it'll be free to air.
     
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  5. Smudger

    Smudger Messi's Mad Coach Staff Member

    In the past Bwood any rugby player who decided to turn his back on the amateur nature of rugby was an outcast. It was deemed unworthy of the principles of rugby and the UAR in effect banned players from playing. Not now of course but these things fluctuate. Even a year or so ago Ledesma decided not to call up someone like Isa because he did not like the way he had decided to pursue a lucrative contract with Toulon.

    It is part of the fierce national pride which sees those who emigrate as it were as traitors almost. Because as you know Bwood the disciplines of rugby (although this is rapidly changing) and hockey are allied to the British settlement in the 19th century and played by the wealthy upper and middle classes the portenos of Buenos Aires. To play for money is beyond the pale. Again this is changing in terms of players going abroad to Holland and Germany and also the Indian Premier League for the men.

    Whereas you look at football and basketball whose players are often drawn from a lower social class and it is seen as a triumph for them to have escaped adversity and made a healthy living as well. Several players have played football from a wealthy background like Redondo, Aimar and Bielsa. But their families were appalled at the idea their sons would have anything to do with football which to an outsider would seem odd in what seems a football mad nation. Truth is until recently fans of the different sports did not really mix or appreciate the achievements in them. There still is a gulf but it is closing.

    As for the rugby Argentina are in the Rugby Championship but having the Jaguares booted from Super Rugby will probably mean a return to sending the best youngsters to Europe and there will be no shortage of takers given the underage sides are on a par with all the top nations now.
     
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  6. Bwood_Horn

    Bwood_Horn Squad Player

    I'm always struck by looking at an Argentine team sheet (especially for hockey and rugby) you can see evidence of the rich tapestry of nationalities who formed modern Argentina - 'Spanish' names are not the norm, but Italian ones are (just off the top of my head we have German ones with von der Hyde - massive inter-war German immigration - and Jankunas which looks Lithuanian). I've been told that the evidence goes further as Argentinean Spanish is Spanish but spoken with an Italian accent? Also the "...traditional English public school sports..." (which is a bit of a misnomer as a lot of (all?) modern team sports came from the English public schools system) get a much higher profile that here in the UK:



    I used to do a lot of work at/with the NPL* (they're major players in fundamental biosensor research). I noticed a lot of the guys there were wearing RFU ties* - an awful lot of them were very stand-offish when I mentioned that I had just joined the coaching/reffing 'continuum' (eg "...well I'm involved with world-wide elite level ref assessment which is way beyond what you're doing...") but a few were very welcoming and friendly. I remember a couple of them telling me that the only reason it became the "Six" nations with the inclusion of Italy was because of Italian 'favourable' 'reclamation' of citizenship laws it could be used as a pathway to getting the cream of Argentinean players into to, then nascent, European club scene...

    *In Twickenham.
    **Technical/ancillary staff not the scientists/engineers.
     
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  7. Smudger

    Smudger Messi's Mad Coach Staff Member

    The UAR and the bodies that govern Argentine hockey were until recently much like the old RFU and England Hockey. Very stuffy and opposed to any change. That has been blown away after some bitter power struggles. The club presidents and you can tell from the names like Regatta, Hurlingham, San Isidro Rugby and Cricket Club did not want to relinquish power at all.

    There has always been the possibility of Argentine players playing for their mother nation so to speak and Italy is not the only one looking to see if they can snap up players be it in rugby or football. Indeed several of the 1938 WC winners were oriundi returning after just a generation to play for the motherland. And subsequently several players of distinction have played for the Azzurri like Sivori, Angelillo, Camoranesi. In rugby the expected influx never happened although Dominguez , Parisse and Castrogiovanni have made a significant contribution to the fortunes of Italy rugby.

    Argentina though having initially a large Spanish descended population and the unfortunate killing and displacement of indigenous peoples had subsequent waves of primarily European migration. Mainly from Italy but also significant settlement from Germany in the 19th century and post WW2 and Poland. Poles constitute the fourth largest grouping of immigrant descendants. Paulo Dybala is one for instance.

    Smaller but significant numbers from Portugal producing the writer Jorge Borges, French who have their imprint all over BA, Ireland, Scotland, England and of course Wales who have their own settlement at Puerto Madryn and a dragon on the local flag. Refugees have also significant numbers so a very large Jewish community and who have produced the great musicians Daniel Barenboim, Martha Argerich and latterly Ingrid Fliter. Armenians and also Palestinians. Post war and to this day a continual influx from eastern Europe (like the young starlet Jankunas or Kairelis who played for the Pumas) as well as immigration from other countries in South America like Paraguay and Bolivia. Aguero's parents are from Paraguay.

    Its an amazing country, scenery, peoples and cultural traditions which like its northern neighbour Brazil are an amalgam and uniquely Argentine while the groups within the country like the Poles and Germans still maintain their architecture, traditions ie beer festivals, dishes from the mother country and national days. Despite the recent history the links between Argentina and Britain are pretty extensive when the Empire decided it could not incorporate Argentina directly it used soft power instead in the form of infrastructure, settlement to build a favourable relationship to Britain which obviously is not so warm today. Nonetheless my cousin travelled over there three years ago from the tip at Ushuaia all the way to Corrientes and all the people he met were charming and happy to see him and also rather curious as to why he was there.
     
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  8. Bwood_Horn

    Bwood_Horn Squad Player

  9. Bwood_Horn

    Bwood_Horn Squad Player

    Surprisingly (and very uncharacteristically) the Germans treated both as training games - the majority of their 'big' names did not travel to London and both Die Honamas and Die Danas fielded squads peppered with U21 players (the men actually gave international debuts for 5 players). I'm assuming they're focussing on the up-coming EuroHockey Championships in three weeks' time (with an eye on Tokyo).

    As a result the men's match was an excellent showcase for game - end to end action and eight goals with TeamGB beating Germany 5-3 (incidently only their 2nd win in this ProLeague - the final, meaningless, rankings will be based on % wins and this results really help GB's position). Nice to see that three of GB's goals came from, pretty scrappy, penalty corners - we're getting better but still not there as shown by Germany's ruthless lone one (admittedly aided by GB losing a defender due to a green card for him not getting in position in time).

    Looking at the girls: well it was the more of the same old, same old. They showed little 'spark' and were nowhere near living up to their title as reigning Olympic champions (TBF few of that squad remain in the team). The legendary keeper Hinch looked very sluggish and the very youthful Die Danas beat them 2:3 with the winning goal coming in the last minutes of a fairly hard-fought match (with Germany always dominating possessing in GB's half) the wasn't helped by Crackle's yellow card. GB's penalty corner routines were, again, woeful.

    Back again from 17h30 tonight with coverage on BT sport.
     
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  10. Bwood_Horn

    Bwood_Horn Squad Player

    Again TeamGB's blokes gave a good advert for the sport beating the Germans 3-1 all of the goals coming from open play. The possession stats are fairly misleading of GB kept their opponents hemmed into their own half defending.

    Incidently the highlights of the first match are now 'up' - after the match the BT commentary team joked that the editors would have a hard job of cutting the footage down to 5mins required for broadcast:


    The girls fared much better beating die Danas 2-0. The first goal was scored by Toman - a 'fortunate' deflection of a poor hit by the defender after the 7th (seventh) consecutive penalty corner giving an idea of GB's weakness an area that they have to work on. Second goal was also a 'fortunate' deflection - but that shouldn't take anything away from GB's tactics - they played a very 'pressing' game forcing the Germans to always play deep.

    Video highlights of Wednesday's 2-3 defeat now up:


    Next weekend the girls face an 'alrightish' US team (15th in the world) in a double header whilst the boys play an improving Spanish squad.
     
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  11. Bwood_Horn

    Bwood_Horn Squad Player

    Bumpity bump.

    The US girls were soundly beaten by the Red Panthers last weekend 3-0 in the first match (the stats hammer home just how much defending in their own half the US did):



    And hammered 6-1 in the 2nd match:



    Be interesting to see whether GB will use this as to get some points on the board in the, meaningless pro-League (the 2020/21 fixtures were for Olympic qualification* and next year's competition the Lionesses will feature) or try out some new tactics (primarily penalty corners)?

    The boys, after their back to back victories over a 'young' German squad, face Spain.

    Push back times:

    Saturday 13h00 GB Men, 15h30 GB Women
    Sunday 12hoo GB Men, 14h30 GB Women

    Free-to-air coverage on BT Sport.





    *82% of Tokyo's population feel it shouldn't go ahead although the IOC do.
     
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  12. Bwood_Horn

    Bwood_Horn Squad Player

  13. Bwood_Horn

    Bwood_Horn Squad Player

    Pretty good weekend of both GB teams.

    The boys played a very defensive Redsticks team (10 players in the circle defending?), losing in shootout on Saturday (following two very quick Spanish goals in the first quarter with GB equalising with goals in the third and final quarters). FWIW GB dominated the game but their shuffles were awful:

    The rematch on Sunday allowed GB to dominate Spain for most of the match beating them 2-0 (video not up yet).

    The ladies hosted, what was described as "....half a squad in progress...." - the other half will be taking part in a test series with Canada, the US and soundly beat them 5-1 on Saturday (GB were experimenting with a new penalty corner routine):

    The meeting on Sunday produced a 5-0 victory for GB. The US are involved in a pan-American tournament and judging by their performance over the weekend they can't be hoping to come away from that with much.

    Next Sunday sees the European Giants in action with the to ranked Belgium men hosting the Dutch which means the Red Panthers have to face the all conquering Dutch.
     
  14. Bwood_Horn

    Bwood_Horn Squad Player

    The Red Panthers have been running a campaign the raise the profile of the women's game:

     
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  15. Bwood_Horn

    Bwood_Horn Squad Player

    The farcical FIH 202021 pro-league has finally been put out of its misery (cancelled games due to covid) and the winners, based on % wins, were announced before last weekend's final matches in Antwerp between the hosts and the Dutch.

    The Dutch women (berated by their coach for not putting in enough effort) were crowned champions before beating the Red Panthers 0-3.

    Later in the day, in bit of surprise, ProLeague Champions the Red Lions couldn't get through the Dutch men's defence and were beaten 0-4 in a great game.


    BT's covering the Eurohockey 2021 tournament (that started yesterday) and it looks like there's a live stream of matches on the fishal site.

    The competiton is really sorting out the order of the knockout matches for the 3+1 dominant men's teams: Belgium, Netherlands and Germany and either England or Spain (on a good day).

    In group A: England walked over a hopeless Russian squad 5-0 and Belgium easily beat Spain with a stunning 2nd half display 4-2. In group B the Germans trounced Wales 8-1 (the Welsh goal coming from a penalty set piece) and the Dutch took their time in surgically taking apart France 3-0. The Lions first real test is this evening (19h45 EST) when they face Belgium - they 'might' comer away with something.

    In the women's competition in group A the nailed-on (for the knockout stages) Netherlands and Spain easily won their opening matches with the Dutch not breaking a sweat to beat the Irish 4-0 and Spain cruising to a 4-1 win over the Jockanese.

    Looking at group B the Lionesses are in action in about an hour facing Italy and at lunchtime and very tasty match is promised between Germany and Belgium. Group B is a tough one with three good sides battling for the two knockout places.
     
  16. Bwood_Horn

    Bwood_Horn Squad Player

    As expected the Lionesses hammered the hapless Italians 4-0 in yesterday's Group A opener (nice write-up here). But the anticipated match was group B's meeting of Die Danas and the Red Panthers (who are hoping to emulate the success of the world's no. 1 ranked team men's - more later) with Germany scoring late in the final quarter and Belgium's equalizer coming 100 sec later leading to a drawn match 1-1.

    This evening the Lionesses will be facing Die Danas.

    Sorry for the lack of video there's nothing on either FIH's or BT's youtube and the Euorhockey site contains the spoiler (and a 'nudge' to get a VPN) that:

    But they give a link to their FB account that contains clips of the matches:

    https://www.facebook.com/EuroHockeyorg (I won't hotlink to them).

    Turning to the men yesterday was a busy day with three matches. It looked like a straight forward victory for the Dutch over Germany with goals in the 1st and 3rd quarters, but living up to all the cliches, the Germans equalised with goals coming in the final minutes of the match 2-2.

    But the day's headline news was the Lions 2-1 victory over the world's no.1 squad Belgium. This wasn't a (p)lucky victory over the Red Lions - England totally dominated (penalty corner routines looked very tame) them in all areas of the ill tempered match (the yellows for 'argie-bargie').

    Elsewhere Spain hammered Russia 5-1.
     
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  17. Bwood_Horn

    Bwood_Horn Squad Player

    Monday saw the girls in action and first off in group A Ireland knocked out Scotland 1-0 and the Spanish were crushed by the Orange Machine 7-1 meaning the Dutch have qualified for the knockout stages (semis, 3rd place play-off/finals). If the Irish get a result against Spain today (pushback 12H30 CET) they also go through.

    Looking at England's group B - the Lionesses started strong against Die Danas but after some woeful defending and goalkeeping by Maddie Hinch they ended up losing 0-2. As the Red Panthers hammered Italy (who've bee eliminated from the knockout stages) 4-0 this means that Lionesses have to beat Belgium today (pushback 17h00 CET) to progress further in the tournament.

    The medal positions in this tournament equate to 3 berths to the 2023 World Cup. Be interesting to see who'll be joining Scotland and Italy in the 5th-8th tournament as the 7th and 8th placed teams 'lose' their seat at the elite level table.

    In a reversal of the 'normal' fortunes of the English squads (the girls have a 'better' history) the Lions have triumphed winning their group by beating Spain in a very bad tempered match (some 'handbags' in the final minutes) 3-2. Not only do they go to the knockout stages but they've won a berth to the World Cup (as do all the teams making it to the knockout stages which start tomorrow with END vs GER and NED vs BEL ). The Red Lions squashed Russsia 9-2 and also qualified. In group B Germany made a real meal of beating France 6-5 (France led for most of the match) and the Dutch swept aside the Welsh 6-0.

    Looking at the men's 5th-8th competition the winner of 5th place also gets a World Cup berth. I *think* the bottom two also loose their 'elite' status.
     
  18. Bwood_Horn

    Bwood_Horn Squad Player

    So England finally score in the 58th minute - which means they have 2 further minutes of 'game management' to proceed to semis and final...

    They're now taking part in the battle for 5th place. Playing Ireland on Friday (11h30 CET) and the Sweaty Socks on Saturday (19h15).
     
  19. Bwood_Horn

    Bwood_Horn Squad Player

    As expected Irish dreams were broken with a clinical 1-5 dissection by England. Judging by what I've seen of them, tonight's (19h15 CET) game with Scotchland should provide a similar number of goals and we can all start chanting ",,,huzzah we're the 5th best team in Europe and we've qualified for the World Cup". Some serious question still remain: why are our set-pieces so inconsistent (aka 'bad')? Why is our game management so awful (after the Belgium match)? These are quite important as after the Olympics 'we' will be appearing as England and not Team GB for the next 3 years on the international stage.

    Looking at the boys - the Lions were beaten by a much more skilful German team (England dominated possession and no. of penalty corners and circle entries) 2-3. It'll be interesting to see as the Germans showcased a new tactic/skill: a very long aerial pass, from deep in their own half, to a jumping player on the opposition's baseline - be interesting to see whether this will result in a rule change with some introduction of 'offside'. Wales and Russia to lose their position at the top table to be replaced by the Gold and Silver medal winners in this summer's Championship II in Poland.

    The Lions play the Red Lions at 10h00 (CET) today for the Bronze medal. Final this lunchtime between Germany and the Netherlands (12h30 CET).
     
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  20. wfc4ever

    wfc4ever First Team Captain

    Another England team beaten to 3rd by Belgium !
     
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  21. Bwood_Horn

    Bwood_Horn Squad Player

    Well the Oranje managed to 'out-German' the Germans. At 2-1 down the Dutch got a penalty corner and with 9 secs on the clock, ran it down, and scored the equaliser taking it to a penalty shoot-out (shuffles). At shuffle no. 3 the Dutch keeper Blaak made an excellent save which obviously unsettled the German players so much so that they choked at the next shuffle.

    Good to see 'our' Sam Ward as joint top scorer of the tournament with 6 goals - 4th best team in Europe.... I can live with that.

    The girls will hopefully hammer the Jokanese this evening (19h15 CET) to guarantee their world cup berth with a 5th place position.
     
  22. Bwood_Horn

    Bwood_Horn Squad Player

    The Lionesses have to avoid a 7 goal defeat against Scotland in order to qualify for the World Cup as Ireland really needed to hammer Italy this afternoon - they could only manage a 3-0 victory.

    It looks like Italy and Scotchlanderland will loose their elite status (demotion to the European Championship II*) with the Gold and Silver winners from Prague's competition in August replacing them.

    *Belgium were playing at this level in 2009.
     
    Last edited: Jun 12, 2021
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  23. Smudger

    Smudger Messi's Mad Coach Staff Member



    With 8 golds, 1 silver and 2 bronzes at the Olympics India remain the most successful side at this event. Since 1980 there was a decline in performance against the European sides. This was down to not changing to the speed on astroturf and less reliance needed on stick handling, physical fitness, mental preparation and more interest in cricket due to success in the ODI format. Places where hockey was a religion like the Punjab and Orissa saw facilities lost and closed and the stream of talent as in some other sports vanish. Almost but not quite.

    In recent years with overseas coaches, a new Premier League, lucrative contracts, great facilities India has been resurgent especially at junior level and is looking to medal again at an Olympics once again. The talent pipeline is up an running again notably in it's former strongholds like the Sikh Punjab, Orissa and Karnataka but interest thanks to the IPL is growing across the country. At the last junior WC in 2016 India took the title on home astroturf beating Belgium with Germany overcoming the Aussies for bronze while Ed Horler of England top scored and now plays for Brussells HC.
     
  24. Bwood_Horn

    Bwood_Horn Squad Player

    Well the Team GB girls don't have to worry about this at the Olympics*.

    *As the Red Panthers didn't qualify (which shows just how far they've come now).
     
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  25. Bwood_Horn

    Bwood_Horn Squad Player

  26. Bwood_Horn

    Bwood_Horn Squad Player

    Bumpity Bump:

    Team GB's boys will be in action on Saturday (Day 1 24/07) against the AmaStokkie (something I've just learnt from wiki - fark know what it translates to) - pushback at 10h30.

    Although match of the day (and possibly the tournament) is the Dutch and Belgium teams at 11h45.

    The Irish girls also start their campaign on day one at 13h30 against South Africa - they should/could get a result here.

    Team GB Women in action on Sunday (01h30) against Die Danas.

    Something odd I've noticed - both GB teams have realistic hope of medal positions, the boys even more so than the girls (and the women's performances in Rio were the most watched performances on iPlayer) - is that neither of the hockey teams are featuring in the adverts for the events. Very odd seeing how much funding the teams get...
     
  27. Bwood_Horn

    Bwood_Horn Squad Player

    Team GB men (that kit looks really cheap and nasty - we have some of the best designers in the world in the UK is that really the best they could do?) expectedly beat the Saffers 3-1. They're in action against a poor Canadian team on Monday that should 'book' their place in the quarter finals (although it would be nice to take some points off the Dutch, Belgians or Germans).

    Full coverage from Auntie:

    https://www.bbc.co.uk/iplayer/episode/p09pjymr/olympics-mens-hockey-gb-v-south-africa

    Girls in action tonight (01h30) against Die Danas. We're reigning Olympic champions why aren't higher profile in the Beeb's coverage?
     
  28. wfc4ever

    wfc4ever First Team Captain

    Probably depends on what is on at the same time as now they have 2 channels only to put events on but sure if the teams progress they will get more coverage.
     
  29. Bwood_Horn

    Bwood_Horn Squad Player

    Well the GB girls totally dominated the first half scoring a good (rare) early goal from a penalty corner (PC) but the Germans got a very 'iffy' penalty to equalise. In the 2nd half the Germans scored from a very quick counter attack and it was the same old GB who couldn't use their massive advantage in PCs (1 goal from 11 PCs against the Germans 0 from 2) and playing much of the final quarter against 10 outfield Danas.

    Still it's not the end of the world losing a game before the knockout stages.

    Full match here (just over an hour in after the surfing):

    https://www.bbc.co.uk/iplayer/episode/m000ybs5/olympics-day-2-red-button-00000400

    They face a weak Saffer side tomorrow morning (10h30).

    Boys in action against a very good German squad 'tonight' (01h30).
     
    Last edited: Jul 25, 2021
  30. Bwood_Horn

    Bwood_Horn Squad Player

    Is that BBC2 and BBC4 (until 19h00) or the red-button?

    Last Olympics the beeb's hockey coverage was extremely patchy (even when it become apparent that the girls were going to produce a historic performance during the pool stages) but that 'slack' was taken up by the FIH's youtube channel (live streaming all the knockout stages and archiving all the matches with 10 min highlights) but not this time...
     
    Last edited: Jul 25, 2021
  31. Bwood_Horn

    Bwood_Horn Squad Player

    Beeb highlights of the girls now up.
     
  32. wfc4ever

    wfc4ever First Team Captain

    Not sure tbh.

    It is a bit unfortunate they now only have 2 channels as really there will be many sports that miss out .
     
  33. Timbers

    Timbers Apeman

    On SKY channel 983 upwards is Eurosport 3 all the way to 9 with a variety of the sports on.
     
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  34. Bwood_Horn

    Bwood_Horn Squad Player

    Eurosport highlights of the action today - is it geo-locked for the UK?

     
  35. Timbers

    Timbers Apeman

    Highlights are but games shown live and then they repeat various events again on the channels
     

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