It's a fairly standard motivational technique when preparing to face one of Europe's lesser lights to pretend they pose a great threat at the same time most people suspect they are made up of a bunch of journeymen players whose career highlight will be kicking Theo Walcott's ankle.
Roy Hodgson has been at it ahead of Friday's World Cup qualifier, telling his England players: "I don't care if they are called Moldova. As far as I am concerned, they could be called Brazil and we have to produce a performance to win us the game."
So far, so standard.
But cut aside the rhetoric and judge Hodgson on his actions rather than his words, and a somewhat different picture emerges.
This week, England have lost Andy Carroll and Adam Johnson from a squad already deprived of Ashley Young and Wayne Rooney.
Whittled down to 21 names, Hodgson's squad seems desperately short of attacking talent, yet curiously the England manager has chosen not to call up any replacements, even with a crucial qualifier at home to Ukraine coming at Wembley on Tuesday.
It is ED's contention that were England in fact facing Brazil, Hodgson wouldn't be happily preparing for the match with Jermain Defoe as the lone striker and only Danny Welbeck and Daniel Sturridge as possible replacements, the latter of whom may also be required out wide given the only other options on the flanks are Walcott, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain and the pedestrian James Milner.
None of the three aforementioned strikers are likely to be first choice at their clubs this season so may in future struggle to command a place in the England squad, which makes Hodgson's decision not to call in reinforcements even more perplexing.
Darren Bent looks a glaring omission. He would have started Euro 2012 as England's first choice striker had he not been ruled out with an ankle injury yet now he is deemed expendable for a trip to Chisnau. Peter Crouch has started the season in decent form for Stoke, ditto Bobby Zamora at QPR.
To leave gaps in the squad seems bizarre at best. Why not take the chance to have a look at Scott Sinclair, who could provide competition in wide areas? After all, the richest club in the world have decided he's good enough for their squad. Or instead of leaving a spot free for no reason, why not recognise Swansea's excellent start by seeing what Nathan Dyer or Wayne Routledge have to offer.
Frankly, the logic of having three spaces unfilled escapes Early Doors completely. For Hodgson to leave his squad depleted for no apparent reason is strange, and it certainly leads to accusations he is not taking a game against the team ranked 141st in the world very seriously at all.
What if Defoe injures himself during the warm-up then Welbeck pulls something in the first few minutes? Sadly, England don't have the option to start asking if anyone in the stands has a pair of boots, unlike Scotland's national team, who plucked someone from the crowd to score an equaliser last week.
ED remembers the last time England visited Moldova for a qualifier very well. Glenn Hoddle was newly in charge, the post Euro 96 glow was still warming the national side and the arrival of David Beckham to the international arena for the first time heralded the arrival of the now discredited 'Golden Generation'. Good times, and not just because a teenage ED was beginning to discover the world of cheap cider, park benches and girls.
This was a time when England could call on an embarrassment of riches in attack. Alan Shearer and Teddy Sheringham were in situ, while Les Ferdinand, Matt Le Tissier, Andy Cole, Ian Wright, Robbie Fowler, Stan Collymore and Chris Sutton were also pushing for inclusion.
Any one of those players would walk into today's squad, and probably straight into the starting XI.
It would be ridiculous to blame Hodgdon for England's lack of options in attack - it's at least another three months before we can start pinning deep structural defects on the current manager - but he hasn't even utilised the best of a bad bunch.
Continually on a mission to avoid complacency, Hodgson added earlier this week: "I know that outside of our little group who are preparing for the game, there will be a lot of thought that Moldova are not very special, not very strong, but we certainly don't go into the game with that thought at all.
'We go into the game knowing they had a draw and a narrow defeat against Holland in the last qualifying campaign. If we are not aware of the fact that this is a major hurdle of the 10 hurdles we have to jump over then we would be very, very foolish."
Yet strangely, England can't even be bothered to select a full squad.
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COMING UP: Alex Chick exercises his Tactical Brain and picks out an interesting theme from the weekend's football, while Jan Molby also delivers his latest blog at lunch. This evening, Des Kane has a dispatch from Scotland and our German experts update us on all things Bundesliga.