Tuesday, 4th June, 2002
My easily favourite boxing web site www.BoxingAction.com
has a section for all-sports that they entitle: SPORTS ARENA..
Last week they summed up England's chances of winning
the World Cup.
It pulls no punches (sorry about the pun) but it is an
honest appraisal, and this is missing from many sections of the media.
I enjoyed it so much that I called them and asked them
to let me publish the article in my Viewpoint's.
They know I am an avid football fan, and they readily
agreed without my having to mention my alleged dentistry skills.
For the record I agree wholeheartedly with their views
except the reference to Martin Keown. That was a little too painful.
I hope you enjoy it as much I did. Frank.
Published on www.Boxing Action.com on 30.05.02.
CAN ENGLAND WIN THE WORLD CUP?
Yes, If Dinosaurs Come Back As Household Pets
Is it possible for England to win the World Cup, the inter-nations
biggest prize in soccer?
The answer is yes! That is if dinosaurs are coming back
- as household pets.
Despite the hysteria engendered by the media that the
England team is capable of winning this extremely hard-to-win trophy,
the present English team does not have the quality necessary to win
such a coveted trophy.
It is no less than 36 years since England last won the
World Cup, and the successful manager was Mr. Alf Ramsey, later to be
Sir Alf was a man short on words, but long on deeds. His
game plan was the basic reason England won the World Cup in'66.
His team had some great players, and some honest to-goodness
players. Alf blended these players together to make them the most successful
football team in the world.
For his great services to football Sir Alf was treated
very shabbily by the 'sweet' F.A. (Football Association). This organisation
is responsible for the administration of English football.
The hero of English football Sir Alf Ramsey was so disenchanted
with the 'sweet' F.A. he became a recluse from football, and turned
his back on the beautiful game that he loved so dearly.
However, for his services to his country by bringing
home the World Cup, he was made a Knight of the Realm.
However, the 'sweet F.A. administrate English football
as if it is a member's club, and if there is one reason for the abysmal
record Of England in the World Cup it is due to the 'sweet' F.A.
When they overlooked Terry Venables as the English coach
and manager for the 2002 World Cup, and insulted English football by
appointing Sven Goran Ericcson, the man from Sweden, they destroyed
the one chance that England had of winning the 2002 World Cup.
The appointment of Sven Ericsson made little sense. He
had no experience of English football or English players, and he was
reported to be costing £3 million a year.
Terry Venables knew every English player intimately, and
had valuable international experience at all levels. Terry would have
Only the arrogant bigwigs at 'sweet' F.A. could make sense
of such a decision that is a disparagement to English football, and
the talented coaches and managers in this country.
Sven Ericsson is an academic in football studies, but
his knowledge of the beautiful game is no greater than that of Terry
The reason why the 'sweet' F.A would not choose Terry
was because of his soiled record in business matters.
It is also said that a former Premier League club chairman
who has an intense dislike of Terry called in favours to have Terry
Either, or both, reason is invalid.
Terry Venables record as a businessman should have no
bearing on his ability to coach the English football team.
However the alleged holier than thou attitude of the
people at the 'sweet' F.A. refused to appoint a coach that had received
adverse publicity as a businessman,
So Sven Ericsson a person with no business connections,
and impeccable reputation fitted well into the 'sweet' F.A. image of
that which the English should have imposed on them..
The fact that such an appointment was not in the best
interests of English football was unimportant to the 'club' members
at the 'sweet' F.A. Image was the most important factor, so Sven Goran
Ericsson was brought in.
How good is Sven Erickson as the manager of England? At
this stage it is not known, that is if the judgement is to be based
However, the fact that he has included Emile Heskey of
Liverpool and Teddy Sheringham, (an Alex Ferguson reject), and Martin
Keown, an honest footballer, (but World Cup class?) is sufficient testimony
that he is not a better coach/manager for England than Terry Venables.
It is likely none of these selections would have been
the choice of Terry Venables.
Sven has not discovered any hidden talent. No player in
his chosen squad is a personal discovery of Sven. Most are obvious choices.
The one player in the England kit that could make his
name at the 2002 World Cup is young Joe Cole, of West Ham FC. If he
were given the opportunity it would be no surprise to see him sparkle.
Another dark horse could be Owen Hargreaves.
Michael Owen is world class, and a fit David Beckham would
make any World team.
It may be a sad statement but dinosaurs are not coming
back into existence, especially as household pets.