Friday, May 29, 2009

The sad news was announced today that the Scottish, Welsh and Irish FA's have signed an agreement stating that they would have no objection to the English FA entering what would be an under 21 side in the 2012 Olympics in London.

The agreement goes further in saying that the three organisations would not stand in the English FA's way as long as no players were selected from any of the other home nations.

To many this will seem like a fine compromise and no fuss at all, but scratch a bit below the surface and a different picture starts to emerge.

FIFA's Sepp Blatter had stated earlier that a combined GB team from all the host nations would not affect the standings of the four countries. He has also stated that by England entering a team under the "GB" banner things would not be affected this either.

The latest mutterings coming out of FIFA though are not so clear, with Blatter stating that his views would not be binding on any of his successors.

One such potential successor is little Jack Warner and his corner has already been set out. The CONCACAF countries, and to a lesser extent some African countries, want to see the UK's four nations go into one side and Warner backs this 100% and is likely to back any such bid for this to become a reality.

If such a thing was to happen, my interest in international football, and many many other Scots, would be all but gone.

Going back to the original point about Team GB at the Olympics, the home nations could have just gotten together and set out a round robin qualifying tournament to see who would represent Team GB.

This of course is also fraught with danger and could set a dangerous precedent going forward for all competitions.

There are no easy answers except to not enter a team at all.

So will England as Team GB start to put the nails in the coffin of the home nations?

It may be too early to tell, but it could be worrying times ahead.
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