Posted by sean on March 25, 2011 at 7:43 pm in Bath City with No Comments

I will neither be supporting nor watching the England national football team tomorrow. One reason for this is I am going to Barrow in Cumbria to watch Bath City (just a short 550 mile round trip). Even if I was staying at home, I wouldn’t care less about the game.

Over the years, my feelings for the England team have changed from pride and patriotism to one of annoyance and disrespect. This was heightened during last summer’s World Cup, where it was the “last chance saloon” for the players – impress me or say goodbye. We all know what happened.

I’m not saying I want England to lose to Wales. I simply don’t care about the national team anymore. Although if the self proclaimed “world beaters” did fail to beat the “3rd world county” by 6-goals to noting, or even lost the game, I would raise a wry smile at the inevitable media explosion as World War 3 kicks off; with Cockneys, Geordies and Scousers all calling England’s representative from Northern Ireland, Alan Green, to express their anger.

I can see it now… “I have never been this angry in all my life” Dave from Sunderland would rage, before adding “No team has ever showed such a passionless display”. Dave clearly forgetting all the 2010 World Cup games and 99.9% of any international friendly played in the last 15 years.

One of the reason why I find it so hard to give a damn about England is that the players clearly don’t give a damn themselves. They, like a lot of the fans, see the international break as an annoyance. And can you blame them? If I was paid in excess of £100,000 a week, under the condition my fitness was perfect, I wouldn’t want to play additional games and risk a career threatening injury either. The game has been poisoned by money.

This is one of the reasons I have fallen in love with non-league. Yes the players get a modest wage, but it isn’t stupid money and insignificant to what the likes of John Terry and Wayne Rooney command. Regardless of income, most players at non-league level play with pride and passion. I would much rather see an England team of players show that they want to play for their country and not their bank balance end up losing 4-0, than a bunch of overpaid, overrated morons win 1-0 (or lose 4-1, if playing Germany).

This isn’t to say that I’ll never support England again, but wholesale changes need to be made from many levels including the board, management and players. Those arrogant fans who think England are the best in the world need a reality check too. Until that comes, I simply don’t care.

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