The Heat in Manaus
It is HOT in Manaus. Its not the refreshing ‘I’ve just walked out of the airpot in Spain / glad to be out of the UK weather hot.’ It is intensely and uncomfortably hot. Walking from the bus to the hostel we were dripping in sweat, I felt drained after just five minutes walk.
So how does this impact on Englands chances against Italy?
I was lucky enough to be invited (courtsey of Spashion magazine) to see Professor Stephen Hawking present his findings from a month long study into the elements that effect Englands World Cup performances. Comissioned by bookmakers Paddy Power the Cambridge physicist analysed data from every tournament since 1966 to come up with a formula which provides the best circumstances for English success. Unfortunately for Roy Hodgesons men, Pro Ste believes the heat, the altitude and the distance from home are all key factors, all of which will work against England in Manaus.
It was interesting to read that Italy will arrive a day later than England on Friday, just a day before the game. Whilst they are likely to be a little more heat resistant than England I would have thought they would need more than a day to acclimitise. Having said that, maybe it would be better to just get in and out as soon as possible before being energy-zapped by the humidity. Either way, ill be thinking twice about berrating England players to ‘close him down’ or ‘get at him’, especially in the second half.
One thing that is clear; possession is going to be important in this game, it’s just not possible to chase the ball for 90mins in this heat. The use of substitutes could also be key. The Italy game will be a good test to see how far England have come from two years ago, when we spent the best part of the game in Kiev chasing shadows. Are the current crop of youngers more adept at keeping the ball at International level? How will we cope with Pirlo? Only one way to find out….bring on Italy for the Rumble in the Jungle…