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Last Updated: Thursday, 13 September 2007, 19:11 GMT 20:11 UK
A spot of German chasing
BBC presenter Jake Humphrey
By Jake Humphrey
BBC Sport presenter

The excitement is building in Shanghai as England prepare for one of their most important games in years.

There were many positives from the first game and I have a sneaky suspicion that Hope Powell's squad may well spring a surprise against Germany.

England in training
Hope Powell knows the players best though, so we'll let her make the tough calls and wait to see who lines up on Friday

Every England player gave their all against Japan and there are some places in the team as assured as Michael Owen's name on Steve McClaren's Christmas card list; Kelly Smith, Karen Carney and Katie Chapman included.

I can't help thinking things need changing around just a little. I'm a big fan of Lianne Sanderson up front (on fire all season for Arsenal) and Anita Asante would be my first choice to blunt the German goal machines at the back.

Hope Powell knows the players best though, so we'll let her make the tough calls and wait to see who lines up on Friday.

Onto the last 24 hours....

People regularly tell me they want to work in TV and ask for advice about how to get their 'big-break'.

My main question is: what job do you fancy doing? The answer? Nine times out of 10 it is 'I like the look of presenting, it seems quite easy and looks glamorous'.

To all those who've asked me that, or thought how easy it's Wednesday's fun and games.


Firstly, let me say I love my job, working for the BBC here in China is a dream come true for a lanky lad from Norwich and there are times when I simply can't believe how lucky I am...most of the time!

"We are going to a very beautiful and tranquil, famous park" said Vincent, our brilliantly named, and quite brilliant Chinese 'fixer'.

We were walking down a very busy street and I was being poked by a rather sharp umbrella and having my feet stood on.

Vincent stopped, turned around and said "Here we are."

Excuse me? A tranquil 16th century park called the Yu Gardens? My nostrils were full of burger smells and I had been offered bags, watches and sunglasses to buy in the last 30 seconds - what was going on?

We weren't able to film in the park as it was too sacred so Matt the producer and I set about re-writing our 'tranquil setting' links, sandwiched between a drinks stall and a man trying to sell us bird seed!

Birgit Prinz
Prinz celebrates escaping the attentions of BBC Sport's finest

This job is all about thinking on your feet and reacting to situations and we knew we'd be OK.

After altering the words to suit the setting we began rolling.

Filming was not easy! People took photos, teenagers waived at the camera, Mr Birdseed reappeared, and a really nice lady positioned herself right next to the camera to wave and smile at me.

I was not feeling great by take 17! I composed myself, mopped my brow and turned around to pick up my water I'd positioned cleverly behind a pole...Birdseed man was drinking it!

It was very hard work and there was more to come. I was sent to take the crew to Pudong to interview German striker Birgit Prinz.

Matt had to get a taxi (apparently not before a street shoe cleaner had covered his 90 trainers in toothpaste!)

We were all tired and grubby, but I think Prinz is a pretty special talent who has achieved a lot in the game - I was happy to wait.

We filmed the Germans training and waited....and waited and waited for four hours. The moment then arrived.

The team took off their bibs and headed towards the bus where we were patiently waiting to take up just two minutes of Frau Prinz's time.

Did she stop and chat? No! As she walked past I used my best German to ask her how she was feeling and requested a quick word.

She declined my polite request. Very frustrating.

So not a glamorous or easy day, but one which is the norm for someone who does this job.

And you know what? I love it!

BBC TWO is showing the England against Germany game live at 1245 BST on Tuesday. Tune in.

  • The BBC has comprehensive coverage with all England's games live on BBC TWO and the BBC Sport website and commentary on Radio 5live.

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