Monday, February 28, 2011

When I was growing up I would have loved to have been a professional football. I'm sure most of us reading this did.

They were our role models. We imitated them in the playgrounds and fields all over the land. We looked up to them. Wanted to be them. But they seemed like they lived in a different world from you altogether. An inaccessible world where you couldn't contact them and apart from the odd Shoot or Match Q&A, you didn't really know much about what they got up to when they weren't playing at 3 o'clock on a Saturday afternoon.

My personal heroes were Kenny Dalglish for his Scotland exploits and Trevor Brooking for his West Ham ones. I know Trev isn't exactly an exciting, charismatic figure, but when I got his signed autobiography many years ago, I was ecstatic. I got to learn all about him.

Nowadays, twitter and other social media have players more accessible than ever. We know far too much about them. Who really cares what they had for breakfast or what they thought of the latest happenings on TV? Magazines like OK and Heat have turned them into public access figures and the mythos I had of them in my childhood is long gone. I liked it the way it was.

Of course, a lot of the current crop of top footballers are just fame hungry whores and although footballers have never been considered to be the brightest folks in the world, so many of the current batch just appear to be complete dicks.

What goes through their minds? Or have they just lost them and their grip on reality completely?

If it's not the latest sexcapades, it's fights in nightclubs, arrests and kiss and tell stories from other kinds of fame hungry whores.

Occasionally you get a real gem like Clarke Carlisle. Bright, articulate and a credit to the game. Could we possibly clone him.

Were football players always like this or did we just never hear about it? Was it only the likes of bad boys George Best and Rodney Marsh or was everyone at it but just out of the public spotlight?

A lot of the actual action on the pitch has been overshadowed this weekend by two players who are no strangers to making the front pages for all the wrong reasons.

Wayne Rooney and Ashley Cole are tiresome bores. At least Rooney's antics have happened on the pitch this time around.

Mr Potato Head's elbow on Wigan's James McCarthy was truly baffling. What the fuck comes over a player to do that? You can't blame the referee for not seeing it. He was shown to be correctly watching the ball. That's what he's paid to do. Watch the action in the game not the off the ball antics from assholes like Rooney.

Full credit to McCarthy. He could have totally over-reacted. You can't excuse what Rooney did though. In no sane world can that be rationaled off. It's not a witch-hunt on the player like Fergie claims.

If Rooney didn't do stupid things like this, then no one would be going after him in the first place.

If it had been the reverse, there would equally be outrage and a lot of it coming from Sir Alex. Managers should defend their players when they can. This though is undefendable.

Then we have Ashole. No matter what the full ins and outs of the air rifle incident that the News of the World reported involving Ashley Cole and Chelsea, there is one big question in it all. What kind of idiot even brings a fucking air rifle to training?

What good can come out of doing that? What is there ever to gain by bringing one of those into the training ground. Again, it's not a witch-hunt. It's calling a prick a prick.

I just despair.

What makes a lot of footballers these days such assholes? Is it society or is it just them?

I do know one thing. I don't want to be a footballer any more.

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