World Cup 2010: Who would really want the England job, now?!
It just wasn’t to be. Those dreams of Steven Gerrard holding aloft the World Cup on July 11th were only just a pipe-dream as England literally had no defence against the Germans. It wasn’t dewy-eyed fondness that England fans show whenever they think of ’66 and Bobby Moore, quite the opposite. Again.
Four years later, we’ll have another Baddiel-Skinner song. Four years later, we’ll have another shocking Cup spin-off with an ageing James Corden trying to entice us with some ‘Back the Beard’ nonsense (things won’t change much). Four years later, we’ll have another England manager, everything will end with disappointment and the coach will be to blame. Not the 11 players on the pitch who are the ones kicking the ball (although I do realise Rooney’s received a lot of stick) but the man who can only watch from the sidelines barking the same kind of things we at home are shouting.
Think of it like this: when a team wins the players get the praise. Teams lose, manager earns blame. It’s one of those unfair things that happen in football, a head-scratcher but it’s always going to happen. A master tactician like Capello was England’s hope. Breezed through qualification in flying colours and suddenly the nation warmed to him, ‘the Italian that who would bring the cup home.’ Now an early exit and calls for his sack.
And sure, if that Lampard’s ‘goal’ had counted, it would have, almost certainly, changed the complexion of the match. If it was 2-2 instead of 2-1, would England commit three of their back four and only have one defender back like they did when Germany knocked in their third? Probably not. Although just the one defender back wasn’t clever, especially as there was plenty of time left. Especially as that defender was Glen Johnson, of all people.
Is it not the ineffective, ageing England players that are to blame? Of course, many will point out that Wayne Rooney is, too, the scapegoat, and that’s another problem. Of course, he’s England’s best player but the reason for his no-shows is simply because Rooney gets service at Manchester United. He didn’t get any for England. He can’t do it himself, believe it or not, and football’s a team game. How about the defensive incapabilities of Glen Johnson or the failures of Frank Lampard, a player, like Rooney, delivers week in week out at club level. Had Robert Green not made that clanger, would England have played Germany or could it have been Ghana? So sure, Rooney’s had a miserable World Cup as he did in 2006, but football’s a collective effort, a team game. Let’s not blame any one player or man as in Capello’s case. It isn’t a cricket game, where a batsman or bowler could single-handedly win matches by scoring a hundred or taking five wickets. Of course, cricket is also a team game but you have to see my point.
The way managers are treated in the media is a touch unfair. Sven, McLaren and Capello. They’ve all been in charge of the same players. Who is to blame for these failures? The players of course, the so-called ‘Golden Generation’. If England want a new man in charge, who wants to take it? Hodgson? Redknapp? Judging by the way past managers have been treated, it begs the question of who would really want the England job?