Ben Delicious reports from Costa do Sauipe in Brazil: You have to be made out of metal not to laugh out loud: when England was drawn to play in a group at the 2014 World Cup in Brazil which includes Uruguay, Italy and Costa Rica, the English Football Association’s Chairman, Gregg Dyke, made a gesture with his finger, passing it across his neck and implying that England’s chances were about close to zero, an all mighty row had erupted back home. The message was: how dare did Gregg make a cut-throat gesture when England still has everything to play for, what with the great Rooney and Gerrard and others polishing their skills for the big occasion and the outstanding manager Roy Hodgson coming up with tricks of his own.
This was really funny. Hilarious actually. Because everyone even with half a brain knows that England has no chance of winning the World Cup. Hell will freeze over before that happens. English players have not been giving it their best for the past 50 odd years and even when they’d won in 1966 it was more to do with some pretty lousy referee decisions in the final and not their huge talent shining. Not to mention that they didn’t even have to go through the qualifiers as hosts and got lucky with the draw.
Anyway, the outrage registered in England is such that you would think the nation was comfortable in the knowledge that the ‘boys’ were ready to give it their best shot. Even though memories of them getting slaughtered by Chile 0:2, with the score board registering even a more dismal result if it weren’t a friendly, still probably linger in their minds. So when ‘hideously white’ Dyke made that gesture, the feeling was that the FA boos had betrayed the English team. Some scribblers even called for his head.
Oh, the stupidity of football, the Moron Land, where people talk bollocks all the time and make statements which would shame a 3-year-old!
But there’s more to the grief that the English fans are going through, and it has nothing to do with Mandel’s death. According to the draw, England will be playing its first match with Italy in the city of Manaus that boasts temperatures in high thirties. And that’s Celsius, in case you think it’s no big deal. So technically Hodgson can already start to practice his explanations of why his team didn’t do well against Italy. You know, the heat and the humidity and the hostile crowds and the bonding piss-up the night before. Even though everyone knows that Italy could slaughter England even if they, Italy that is, had five or six one-legged players.
The thing is that the ‘lads’ don’t really care if they win or lose. They earn so much money in the Premiership that they just can’t force themselves to make an effort. And besides, they are used to playing in clubs according to three or four patterns of the game which are hammered into the tiny brains, leaving all the really classy stuff to foreign players.
Still, Dyke and the outraged army of English fans did provide some entertainment for everyone. And, hopefully, England will not fail to come up with some pretty funny stuff in Brazil as well.