Sport Shining example: Dan Carter sports the cap he received for making his 100th Test appearance

His eye an egg, Chris Robshaw convinced as the vanquished captain, but looking around the pitch at the close, having briefly led the best team in the world, there was vindication as well as the scars.

Sports Letter: The Ossie option

Sir: The next England manager must know international football and, just as important, how he wants his team to play it.

Sports Letter: Screened candidate

Sir: If we are to learn from the mistake of appointing Graham Taylor, the next England manager must be:

Sports Letter: Time for act of faith

Sir: The next England manager needs to have the maturity of Ron Greenwood, but not have the personal life of Bobby Robson or the fallibility of judgement of Graham Taylor. He (or she) must be fit, have the experience of running a large organisation with the respect of the supporters.

Sports Letter: My mate's the man

Sir: I would like to nominate a colleague, Martin Bowdery, for the post of England manager. His experience is as follows: coach and manager of Muswell Hill under-10s; winner of the Fair Play award in the Enfield District League.

Sport: What the papers said about . . . Graham Taylor

'Graham Taylor wanted to go down in history. He will. The worst England manager of all time.' The Sun

Football: England the victims of vacillation: Taylor's Teams / He said it was injuries, but a study of his teams suggests that Graham Taylor never made up his mind. Clive White reports

ON THE face of it, Graham Taylor's record does not seem at all bad. Statisticians looking back in years to come might even conclude that it was quite a good one really: P38 W18 D13 L7 F62 A31. A Premiership team with such a record last season would have been runners-up.

World Cup Football: A manager found wanting when the luck ran out: So how will history judge Graham Taylor? At times he was unfortunate, argues Ken Jones, but mostly he was muddled

IN THE early hours of yesterday morning, hoarse and at times just slightly emotional, Jack Charlton could be heard expressing sympathy for the British managers who will not be sharing his experiences in the United States next summer. 'Football can be a cruel game,' he said. 'I feel for them all.'

World Cup Football: Taylor keeps his plans under wraps

GRAHAM TAYLOR was in defiant mood after the match in Bologna, refusing to be drawn on whether he would be resigning as England manager. 'I'm a football man and I'm pretty confident I'll be one until the day I die,' he said. 'The whole thing, the speculation that's going on, is perfectly understandable when the results are not there.

GLOSSARY / Size has nothing whatever to do with it

SOMETIMES a little word will go a long way. Little itself is a case in point, a word that has remained virtually unchanged in the language for more than a thousand years but which seems to accumulate new nuances in every century (the Oxford English Dictionary's first citation is from 893). It has been much in the news recently because of two deaths, those of James Bulger and Laura Davies.

Football: The Turnip Pack: Tabloid pundits who can make or break an England manager

Quotes by tabloid football writers on Graham Taylor and his England managership, suggestions for the future and their thoughts on the media omitted.

Comment: A nation of whingers?

IT HAS become a commonplace among sports journalists to accuse the All Blacks of cheating. The New Zealanders' alleged sins range from mere gamesmanship - time-wasting, or obstructing opponents by returning too slowly from offside positions - to acts of violence which verge on the criminal, most notably the disgraceful raking last week of Philip de Glanville's eye.

Football: Time to pass flame to positive thinkers: Bologna is a fine opportunity for rebuilding. But will Graham Taylor take the chance? Joe Lovejoy reports

ENGLISH football has had a wake or two these past few weeks, and the atmosphere is unlikely to rise much above the funereal on Monday, when Graham Taylor rakes over the ashes of a spent World Cup campaign to produce his last squad as manager of the national team.

Football: Was England's failure all in the mind?: Simon O'Hagan analyses the methods of Graham Taylor's head man, the team psychologist Dr John Gardner

GRAHAM TAYLOR has been accused of many things, but a reluctance to experiment isn't one of them. Indeed, he might be described as having an almost obsessive urge to tamper. In that respect, the predecessor with whom he has most in common is the great dossier compiler himself, Don Revie.

Sports Letter: England's need for rebuilding

Sir: Against the Netherlands, England can count themselves unlucky on the night. But luck is no substitute for skill. The Netherlands scored two world-class goals, alas England could but score. The facts show that England gained only two points out of eight against Norway and the Netherlands, the only realistic challengers in Group Two. Graham Taylor will take all the blame, but the root of the problem lies deeper, at Lancaster Gate. Poor coaching techniques and mismanagement have put English football into serious decline. It is time for radical change. Scrap the old-boy network who for many years have managed a cosy cartel that manipulates our national game for the benefit of its own financial interests with no interest for football itself. English football must rebuild from the bottom. Let football be managed by football experts.
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