Saturday, 6 February 2010

England's ex-pecs

The choice of 'Football saints and sinners' as the headline for my column in the Exeter City v Southampton issue of The Grecian was chosen before all the tabloid fuss about a certain Chelsea footballer. And the behaviour I was referring to was financial rather than sexual -- the former being a bit of ethics-free zone in The Beautiful Game, it seems.

Anyway, the BBC's Phil McNulty is basically right in his assessment of the sacking of John Terry as England captain. The likely impact of his much-publicised personal life on media coverage and team morale seems to have been at the core of it, rather than any moral judgement. Fabio Capello is also understandably puzzled by all the local hype surrounding the captaining of club and country, since he values shared responsibility above the cultivation of iconic individualism.

Besides, who is England's new "role model" and "leader of men"? Welcome to JT replacement skipper Rio Ferdinand: someone who is currently serving a three-match ban for violent conduct, who was previously banned for 8 months for failing to turn up for a drug test, who has endured a year-long drink-driving ban, and who also featured in an alcohol-fuelled post-season trip to Ayia Napa in Cyprus which surfaced in Sunday papers showing him and other players filming themselves in a sex orgy.

Even his disguise is a bit rubbish, as you can see...

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