Plodding pundits leave me laughing
Last updated at 20:01, Thursday, 21 June 2012
Having Mark Bright and Andy Townsend discussing the qualities of Europe’s best players is like Ronald McDonald critiquing the culinary genius of Heston Blumenthal.
Hardly a recipe for success, these two, and many more on the payroll of the broadcasters are serving up substandard insight.
Punditry across the board has been poor, culminating in a couple of my favourite clangers for some time.
First up is poor Simon Brotherton, the bumbling Beeb commentator who repeatedly mistook David Silva for David Villa during Spain’s 1-0 win over Croatia.
He went one better than confusing two of the best players on the planet, and came up with this purler: “Ivan Perisic just won the double with Borussia Dortmund in Italy.”
Despite not doing overly well in my GCSE geography exam, I can almost guarantee that Dortmund is not in Italy.
FLASHING a pair of sponsored undies is worse than racially abusing a human being, and that, dear readers, is a fact.
It’s a fact when Uefa is judge, jury and executioner.
The short-sighted authority whacked Danish striker Nicklas Bendtner with a £80,000 for revealing his Paddy Power pants after scoring against Portugal.
But, worryingly, that same governing body deemed the abuse Mario Balotelli was subjected to by the Croatian fans as less reprehensible.
The Croatian Football Federation was fined £20,000 less than Bendtner.
Uefa’s buffoonery comes as no shock.
This same body fined Manchester City more for taking the field a minute late after half time in the Europa League than Porto were fined after their fans racially abused Balotelli.
Uefa’s priority obviously lies with cash, rather than morals, despite president Michel Platini declaring he was “not happy with the Croatian people”.
If that was the case, then he should have made a stand, and shown racism the red card, rather than pick on Bendtner for flouting the merchandise rules.
If Platini stood by his convictions, he could be a major player in helping to rid football of this disease.
In 2012, racism should not be an issue, but sadly it is.
To discriminate because of the colour of a man’s skin or his religious beliefs is wrong. It’s as simple as that.
The civilised world knows that, yet football’s governing bodies, and I include Sepp Blatter, and his Fifa cronies, fail to do their bit to stamp it out.
Instead, they target ridiculous incidents like Bendtner, and ignore the real issues plaguing the not-so-beautiful game.
IF YOU’RE going bald and have the cash for a hair transplant, then go for it.
But don’t then go and do that to it, Mr Rooney.
His barnet might be mad, but Wayne’s match-winning performance was cause for optimism.
England’s talisman nodded the Three Lions into a quarter final clash with Italy.
A last eight exit was my prediction before Euro 2012 kicked off.
Spain were the victors in the hypothetical scenario, but since then belief has grown.
I’m not saying England can win the thing – they won’t, but beating Italy is a distinct possibility.
A solid defence has given England a base to work from.
Joe Hart, John Terry and Scott Parker in particular have been superb, and with Rooney back and firing, this England team can progress to the semis.
Italy are no world beaters any more, so there is nothing to fear. Prediction: England, just, and Germany in the semis.
First published at 19:21, Thursday, 21 June 2012
Published by http://www.timesandstar.co.uk
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