Magnificent, magnificent end to the Wales v Italy game this afternoon. Apologies to all my Welsh friends but for the last 10 minutes of the game I was on the edge of my seat chanting “Italia!” The build up to their try was fantastic and the conclusion of the match will make it on to Question of Sport for decades to come.
All of which leads me at last to the conclusion that I should give up on football and turn to rugby for entertainment. It’s not just that City are having such a grim season (there’s plenty of solace to be had in how well Lincoln and Scunthorpe are doing or the fact that Ipswich are worse than Norwich.) It’s a growing sense that something is deeply wrong with the game. I am sick of listening to Paul Jewell, Sam Allardice and Arsene Wenger blame the world (but particularly the referees) for the failures of their own teams EVERY time they lose. I’m sick of the unjustifiable salaries paid at the top of the game, the ridiculous ticket prices and the fact that the only thing that makes Premiership teams recognisably English is that they play most of their games here. The icing on the cake was the rash of whingeing (Wenger again) about replays in the FA Cup. How many more advantages to the big clubs want for **** sake??? If they care about winning the trophy, buy more players, if not, prioritise a different competition and play your youth team but dont complain about playing too many games when it is the result of you winning things!!!!
Now, don’t misunderstand me, pompous commentators and predictable ex footballers who take the ‘it’s not like it was in my day’ line on virtually any subject wind me up almost as much as all the other things I have just listed. Football is the entertainment business, not some sacred national treasure, so if people want to pay a fortune to watch it (and lets face it if City get anywhere next season I shall no doubt get sucked in again) that’s just fine. But, for now, football on me are officially on a trial separation.