Some people might say it’s the footballing equivalent of spitting out a dummy, bawling in a pram and shouting “Ball! Ball! Mine! Mine! Wanna go home!” I honestly never thought the John Terry Wayne Bridge cuckold lingerie model saga would end this way. So what now for England and a player who once held the exalted position of Second Choice Left Back Who Probably Won’t Get A Game Anyway?
Hard on the heels of the story about Scotsmen and women supporting England at the World Cup comes another twist in the debate – only this one will have everyone rolling their eyes in dismay.
Disclaimer: This isn’t a Top Ten, just a selection of past and, in one case, current Liverpool players who I think are worthy of a mention for their World Cup finals record. Who have I missed?
The question of who captains England at the World Cup remains unresolved following the news that Steven Gerrard is to deputise for Rio Ferdinand in the forthcoming Egypt friendly. Am I the only England fan asking: how long can this go on?
It seems there are problems with England’s World Cup base which refuse to go away. This clearly has implications for FIFA’s plan to name the training bases for the 32 competing nations at a press conference in Sun City this morning. Will England say yes to the Royal Bafokeng Sports Campus or go elsewhere?
It seems at least one major company has decided to stir up a little World Cup media publicity – by annoying the Scots. Not content with politely ignoring Scotland’s failure to qualify for the tournament in South Africa, a feat accomplished by southern softies England with little trouble, Mars has launched a new logo on its famous chocolate bar which is causing quite a fuss north of the border.
An unhinged housekeeper is whispering in Blatter’s ear “Ahh go on, go on, go on, go on,” followed by Blatter as played by Dermot Morgan saying “Mrs Doyle, honestly I couldn’t”, before he is forced to back down as the verbal onslaught continues: “Ahh go on, go on, go on, go on, GO ON!”. “OK,” the old survivor says, “I’ll stay until I’m 90.” I can’t think of any other explanation why Blatter is so determined to stay put.
Here in the UK our papers like to build people up and then knock them down. Come the 2010 World Cup, who would be bold enough to say the same won't happen to England manager Fabio Capello in the white-hot heat of a tournament? He too may suffer the fate of those who shone brightly at first, only to realise the media is a fickle mistress.
Posted by Mike Towers at 7:42:00 am
Stephen Warnock is being touted as the answer to the England left back problem. The Villa defender almost certainly doesn’t shag his team mates’ partners or share exotic photos on his mobile. However, since he breaks the same leg every three months, the chances of him lasting a full season are slim. Not so, says Stilian Petrov, who doesn’t think any of this matters.
Wayne Rooney will take up the main striking role for England at the World Cup in South Africa. Quite right too. The Manchester United striker is in excellent form right now. Some say he is almost single-handedly keeping his team in the race for the Premiership. He can certainly change games in an instant. While doubts remain about his temperament, Rooney's continued presence up front for England is a must if Capello's men are to mount a serious challenge to Brazil and Spain.
Poor facilities and hooliganism stand in the way of progress in Italian football. That’s according to Fabio Capello on a return mission to his homeland yesterday. The England coach compared the Premiership and Serie A and was scathing about the latter: "Players prefer to go to England and Spain and it is not just for the money. They see Italian stadiums are half empty and realise we've got problems." More follows.
World Cup Bafana Bafana 2010 returns following illness caused by watching too many World Cup videos and eating more Doritos than the human body can reasonably be expected to cope with. All in the line of duty, you understand. It therefore seemed fitting that as I return, some players are preparing to bow out for good.
The series moves on to the nineteen-eighties for an in-depth look at the players who took centre stage in Spain and Mexico.
Posted by Mike Towers at 5:11:00 pm
Now the Terry World Cup England captaincy story has been resolved it’s time to concentrate on more important matters such as the World Cup referees, deranged Russian websites and Harry Kewell’s slow recovery from his 2004 hair band accident.
Not had enough of the Terry story yet? That’s right, the saga which threatens to last longer than talks to resume devolved government in Northern Ireland won’t get off the pages of our papers or our computer screens. You just know a story has “legs” when even the Wall Street Journal takes an interest. Look out for interesting quotes from Alexi Lalas and Tony Cottee. Ponder exactly how football has become another reality TV experiment. And then pray it’s over by the weekend so we can all get back to some proper football news.
Two points dropped during a shaky performance at the KC Stadium: is the Terry World Cup captaincy cuckolding alleged abortion French lingerie model saga taking its toll on Chelsea?
The news this morning still concentrates on the Terry affair and its possible implications for the England World Cup squad. Thankfully Fabio Capello is close to returning after knee surgery and we can probably expect a decision on the captaincy by the time he flies off to Warsaw for the Euro 2012 qualifying draw. At least that’s what some of the UK papers are saying today.
It’s a sordid tabloid tale which threatens to overshadow England’s World Cup preparations. Can John Terry survive as England captain and who will take over if the Chelsea man is forced to step down?