What I know about football you could write on the back of a postage stamp, what I care, on the back of a five pence piece. To me, football has and always will be a girls game, played by overpaid prima donnas, more worried about breaking a nail and looking beautiful at the next nightclub than getting stuck in and giving it 110%
I suppose when you’re earning £100,000 a week, and let’s call that four times as much as one of your average ticket-buying fans earns in a year, it’s easy to lose sight of the goal.
This is why I’ve always been a rugby fan, those boys don’t get paid ludicrous sums of money to kick, well carry, a ball and they literally bleed for their country. They are hungry for success, they want it and they’ll mostly give it their all to get there.
You see Sunday wasn’t the only England international this weekend, 24 hours beforehand the England rugby team took on South Africa and held them to super-tight 14-14 draw in the dying minutes of the game, ok so they didn’t win but there was no way they were going to go home without a fight yet hardly anybody noticed, and that’s wrong.
Even as a staunch rugby fan I’ll admit I was on the edge of my seat during the England Italy penalty shootout. The delicious Cabernet Sauvignon may have had something to do with that, but I couldn’t help but feel as Ashleys Young and Cole hoofed their penalties back towards Blighty that they just didn’t care, to them it was just another Saturday kick-about before falling out of Mahiki with a teammate’s girlfriend.
You could never say that of a bloodied Owen Farrell as he hoofed his high-pressure penalty over the bar at Port Elizabeth on Saturday to pull a draw from the jaws of defeat in the 72nd minute.
When it comes to football we’re blinded as a nation, those boys can do no wrong and we’ll watch in our millions, beer and Vuvuzela in hand cheering on every backward pass of the ball and burying our heads in our hands every time they board an early flight home. It’s time we stopped, asked questions and stopped blowing smoke where the sun doesn’t shine.
They need their hunger back, and they’ll never get it if we as a nation force feed them before every tournament.
England expects: Yes, it does.