Sunday, 27 June 2010

So, that should be that

No doubt the Murdoch rags will suggest that England's potential equaliser was not given because of a full-scale Blatter/Platini conspiracy (and yes, I'm well aware of the chutzpah inherent in my calling anyone else a conspiracy theorist). There is no doubt some case for comparing it to the third goal 44 years ago, and suggesting that back then England still often got what it needed because of the residue of imperial power (the global spread of British pop culture in the '60s was much more the last gasp of the old empire, always crucially dependant on the new one, than the dawn of a new, post-imperial identity for Britain which much of the Left still dangerously believe it was) whereas now, after decades of misplaced grasping and opportunity-missing, it has to fight like any other country and, both because of its history and its latterday teaboy status in someone else's empire, is less likely to get it than most. But that is just carmodising: the truth is that England were not good enough. They might well not have beaten Ghana, for whom it really would have been "more than a match" much more than this one was to either side. And they're likely to be even worse under the sort of manager The Sun would want (with the sole exception of Roy Hodgson, the only English manager who has sufficient experience of the world game that he might be able to make his mediocre, celebified charges actually care about something they can't earn grotesque amounts of money from). That is the brutal truth. It must be faced. At least now the political consequences I feared will presumably not happen - and, with right-wing English nationalism held back, it might also be easier for Andy Murray. Hopefully even The Sun will not begrudge that.


  1. I assume you too felt a sense of schadenfreude seeing the omnipresent Jagger and those England players having to take such a thrashing!

    (Though they simply do not learn - listening to interviewed players on BBC R5L, they dwelt on 'how well they played' when it was 2-1, same old feeling sorry for themselves and lack of acceptance of how bad they were)

    I think many fans are realising that 'we' weren't good enough and are not simply blaming the referee and FIFA, as they might have done had it been a closer 2-1 defeat. But England never really looked like scoring other than that incident, and their defence was so pathetic that Germany were always going to win this by a decent margin (and indeed should've had a few more!).

  2. Quite, and the only time in the last 44 years that England have beaten Germany in a competitive match was in the group stage of Euro 2000, when both were awful (Germany still had a 39-year-old Lothar Matthaus) and neither got out of the group stage. That alone says everything you need to know.