England victory one for the part-timers
ENGLAND qualified for the World Cup last night.
But those people around you in the pub jumping up and down – they are not real football fans.
Football is a tribal game.
Manchester United fans hate Liverpool fans, Tottenham fans hate Arsenal fans, everybody hates Leeds fans.
Many goings-on in last night’s match were a bit odd.
Slaven Bilic attempting to wear an earring and still be a respectable international manager.
Fabio Capello giggling after Wayne Rooney scored England’s fifth goal, then remembering to put his default straight face back on.
Steve McManaman forgetting he is not on Setanta anymore and rocking the waistcoat on terrestrial TV.
But it is the idea that football fans can unite behind one team, and each other’s players, that is most flawed.
It is impossible to be a football fan- a real, end-of-the-world-if-you-lose, Darlington-away-on-a-wet-Tuesday, football fan – and not support a club, a club that means more to you than close family members.
Supporters of lower league clubs will always be asked if they also follow a Premier League alternative.
A real football fan will always answer no.
And so it is with England.
A real football fan will always pick the fortunes of their club ahead of the fortunes of their national team.
Millions of fans all over the nation would sacrifice England’s World Cup qualification for their own club winning the league/promotion/avoiding relegation (delete where applicable) this season.
And that is exactly how it should be.