Sunday, November 18, 2007
Lady Luck Smiles to Save England's Head
That the English team had to pray for an Israel win over Russia to keep their qualification of Euro 2008 alive is a contradiction in large proportion. And lady luck surely smiled on their face with Israel pulling a surprise 2-1 win to sink the Russians yesterday.
Looking up to the gods to gain qualification for next year's European Premier football bonanza betrayed the lack of quality in English players despite the boom and publicity generated by the Premier League. Take out the foreign players and the English football will be left yawning for any spark.
One would mistake the strong 4000 (proud) English supporters cheering Israel in Tel-a-Viv for some Jews from West Bank or Jerusalem. So it appears even the obtuse pride can be auctioned at the right price.
Pride on auction
Football spares no room for pride. Team England has been full of of contempt assuming that their qualification was as good as guaranteed given the 'weak' opponents in their group. But alas! Croatia is heading the group and already qualified. They also appear to have been inflicted with that misplaced pride if losing 2-0 to the unrated Macedonia yesterday is anything to go by.
Not that England are out of the woods yet. They have to at least draw with Croatia on Wednesday at Wembley. And with their over-rated stars missing with injuries anything can happen and the Russians must be holding vigil in their churches. Joining Rooney is the football 'wards' is Michael Owen. That leaves Peter Crouch to lead the onslaught upfront.
Owen's injury is definitely England' self-inflicted malady. Knowing very well that the striker is always an accident waiting to happen, Steve MacClaren goofed large scale in taxing his charges against the colourless and useless fixture with Austria.
Add to that loss of form from the aging Beckham and you get a pack of 11 donning 3 lions with St. George's flag chasing a piece of leather bereft of any entertainment nor quality to match the media hype.
It may not be wild to imagine that nature is teaching lessons to bully boys on both sides of the Atlantic. What with the the land of opportunity losing its sheen and influence in the global arena in terms of FREEDOM (after 9/11) and innovation? Just look at all the major technological breakthrough always emerging from Seoul.
It may either be crunch time and a time for re-evaluation of values and pride or just mother nature is simply paying the big boys (bullies) in their own coin.