It’s been well established in other threads that Germany would have to be extremely lucky to take UK on G2. Assuming that Germany loses one or two planes on G1 while taking out the UK navy and builds an aircraft carrier and two transports, I think it is best for UK to preserve the remainder of its fleet and keep Italy from expanding… even if it means allowing UK to fall.
On UK 1, build all infantry to force Germany to build mostly transports on Germany 2 (if they intend on pursuing a Sealion strategy) and then move all of the fleet that you can to SZ 92 (next to Gibraltar). Yes, I know that not blocking the sea zones around UK will allow Germany to get two bombardments, but that is only in the first round and it will still take luck for Germany to take UK on G2.
Moving all your fleet in the Med creates a real dilemma for Italy. Their planes can’t reach your fleet and therefore they will lose most of the time if they send their entire navy against yours due to the slightly lower attack value versus your defense value (they would also have only 5 hits versus your 6 or 7, depending on how many of your destroyers survived). If they attack the French fleet with their navy then you can destroy their navy on UK 2. If they try to block you with a destroyer or cruiser then the French navy has a good chance of taking that out, allowing the UK navy to finish off the Italian navy on UK 2. They could try to block you with a destroyer AND try to take out the French navy with their planes, but then they risk losing planes and might still not destroy the French navy. Italy can’t leave their transports unprotected because UK’s planes can reach anywhere in the Med, unless Italy takes Crete… but wouldn’t Italy rather be putting those units in Africa to put more pressure on Egypt?
Then on UK 2, since UK is going to fall anyway due to all those German transports and tanks, abandon UK by moving all your fighters to Gibraltar. Also, either build destroyers off of Canada or a transport and two bombers in South Africa, depending on where you think you need it the most. Your cruiser off of Brazil will join up with the Med fleet on turn 2 and your destroyer is ready to enter through the Suez canal, so on UK 3 the Italian navy is dead, Italy will never get any of its national objectives, and the surviving UK surface fleet will start convoy raiding German and Italian IPCs in the Med.
The USA can bring in just enough subs by the end of turn 5 to make sure that every convoy territory is disrupted by Italy’s turn 6, putting Italy’s income down almost to zero (perhaps 1 economy for Bulgaria).
Now obviously the Soviets will be having a hard time against Germany since Germany will need less infantry and tanks to take out UK and may use some of those loaded transports to attack the Soviets. But without that Cairo victory city, Germany has to take out all three of the Soviet victory cities while keeping the ones the Axis already have.
I don’t think the Germans can take out UK AND Novgorad on turn 3; most likely it will be turn 4 when Novgorad falls. After that, Russia is three turns away; but surely a competent Soviet player would not lose both of its remaining victory cities on turn 7. I don’t know the absolute earliest it could be taken against competent Allied players but it seems like turn 10 at the absolute minimum (and I think I’m being generous). This would require Germany sending almost everything it can spare against the Soviets WHILE trying to defend UK, France, and Southern Italy. I don’t see how any competent USA player can’t take back and hold at least ONE of those territories by the time that last Soviet victory city is taken, especially with Italy earning almost zero starting on turn 6.
Of course, I understand that Germany can help out Italy by building more navy and/or fighters to help clear the Med of UK naval units, but then that only helps keep the Soviets in play for longer, giving the USA more time to liberate a victory city.