Thursday, September 13

Lads Victorias!

England wins a crucial '08 European Cup qualifier against Russia last night with a commanding score of 3-nil. The star is Michael Owen, pictured, who scores twice - adding to his brilliant goal against Israel on Saturday and bringing his life total for England to 40. The record BTW is held by Bobby Charlton who put 49 into the net. It's hard to remember that 14 months ago Owen was painfully out of the World Cup with a busted metatarsal. The other surprise success this week is striker Emile Heskey who has returned from retirement, played brilliantly and received two standing ovations at Wembley- while pushing age 40! I recall watching Heskey play in the '02 World Cup in Korea at 7AM GMT due to the time difference. The locals drank breakfast beer, smoked fags and chanted"Donkey" every time Heskey was on the pitch. It wasn't pretty. Ethnic dislikes aside, England coach McClaren is going to have a difficult staffing decision to make when stars Frank Lampard, Wayne Rooney, Owen Hargreaves and David Beckham return from injury. Logic might suggest: don't tinker with a good thing. Photo of a younger Michael Owen by the World Press.

NB Eitan and Madeleine are allowed to watch the first 30 minutes of the game, which otherwise begins past their bed-time. Eitan is desperate to hear the results this morning and dances when he learns the outcome.