Thursday, September 13, 2007

Not Quite the Worst Football Team in the World

Okay, okay, so the worst football team in the world is showing signs of life. There are two good reasons for this, both unnoticed by the football commentariat. The first is that Micah Richards plays for Manchester City and Sean Wright-Phillips used to play for Manchester City. The second is that Wayne Rooney and Frank Lampard weren't playing in either of the last two games. Neither, when playing for England, is any good; Rooney gives up on games if he doesn't feel they are going well after five minutes and Lampard spends his time fretting about the dismal sales of his book. Their attitudes drag the whole team down. Drop them for good, McLaren, I'll tell them if you're scared.


  1. After clicking on the last link and seeing the paired purchase suggested by Amazon, my immediate thought is that you have a great opportunity to pen another best-seller, or at least a stunning coffee table accessory, Bryan. Given your libel laws, in the UK, it would have to be Homoerotic Art in the 21st Century: Footballer Autobiography Covers In the U.S., OTOH, one could apply the past tense (and dispose of the pronoun) while borrowing the phrase, Bend it Like Beckham.

  2. Completely agree about Rooney, he's a liability for England. As Alan Hansen said, many times, England 'got it down and played' (always a good idea), and I'm wondering if a Beckham-influenced fashion is fading from the team, a fashion for lofty, precise passes that look impressive, get appreciative rounds of applause, have absolutely no purpose and destroy the flow of play. Wonder if Beckham and Engerland were corrupted by his tattoos... Freddie Flintoff has some by the same genius - don't follow cricket closely but wouldn't be surprised if he's also lost his flow.

  3. I disagree about Rooney, a prodigious talent who was often misused by Sven, both as a lone striker and out-wide (the same accusation of misuse in Rooney's earlier days at Old Trafford can also be levelled at Ferguson). In both those roles, and in his best position as a withdrawn striker, he has always been prepared to run himself into the ground - for club and country. When Bryan states that "he gives up on games if he doesn't feel they are going well after five minutes" is clearly nonsense and I suspect he (Bryan) had donned his City shirt and was sporting a wicked grin just prior to writing it ( a grin at 5.34 BST ?) His (Rooney's not Bryan's) problem is his big mouth and aggressive, sullen and brainless attitude to officials, a rotten example to young players. Hopefully, he'll eventually grow up. But used properly he is surely England's greatest asset.

    What of Micah Richards, the lad from Birmingham via Leeds? The most exciting English player to emerge since Rooney. Here is a young man of marvelous ability and, it appears, strong character who, if he can avoid the problems that beset so many multi-millionaire footballers, and if he remains at City, could become a very important role model for the young of inner-city Manchester. There really does seem to be something quite special about this young man.