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Euro 2012: Forward Thinking

I don’t want anyone to win Euro 2012. In a way I genuinely hope Germans, the Italians and now Spain all get done for match fixing. And while we’re at it I hope Sepp Blatter suffers multiple kidney stones.

I seem to despise any country that’s successful and isn’t English, much like most England fans to be fair, except I’m the only one that admits it. The Spanish side are constantly diving, Italy are cheaters and Germany are well… Germany. The disappointment of England bombing out of Euro 2012 was on par with hearing the BBC were going to cover the rest of the games – devestating news.

Alan Hansen actually has a lever on the back of his head that needs rewinding after each piece of coverage, as BBC viewers apparently can’t get enough of hearing his recycled verbal garbage that holds about as much originality as ITV2’s overwhelmingly terrible reality series ‘Mark Wrights Hollywood Nights’.

Despite commentators constantly drooling over Spain’s flowing,  beautiful but frequently boring style of play as well as practically ever other European side bar England, noone has been wonderful at Euro 2012. Germany had a decent quarter final but let’s not forget they were playing a Greek side about as interested as David Cameron is in his daughter while he’s at the pub.

Hodgson after Ashley Youngs penalty miss.

That being said England were embarrassing.  I’ve never known a team try so hard to ignore Andrea Pirlo and not get beat. Apparently his stench was so great England needed to stay at least seven yards away to avoid shriveling up and passing out.

But being the positive, forward thinking and optimistic man that I am I do believe Englands solid defensive displays are definitely something to build on in the future. The back four looked extremely organised and will hopefully prove to be a tough nut to crack in future tournaments. If we manage this, teach Ashley Young how to pass and ditch the overrated ogre that is Wayne Rooney we may have a chance at the world cup in 2014.

We just need to avoid Sweden, Italy, Germany, Portugal and probably Spain.

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The Little Italian That Could

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2007. The Messiah had arrived. The man who could turn water into wine had graced our country with his managerial grace and stylish spectacles. Fabio Capello had the doors to his football factory open and England had the golden ticket. Excitement lined the streets. People desperate for a shake of the hand from the guy whose touch could turn anything to platinum.

He can’t speak English? Not important.

The anticipation was in every England fans eyes. This was it, “40 years of hurt” was about to get an appointment with the most prestigious doctor in football. This guy was the boss among bosses.

Guaranteed stricter than your parents, as an England player you weren’t allowed phones at the dinner table. If you wanted to go out with a girl he needed to meet her first. And her parents. And you had to be in by dark and in bed by the end of Corrie.

But this was about the approach more than football. Gone were the days of booze and coke-fueled nights out featuring the cream-of-the-crop in foreign prostitutes.

Mr. Wolly with the Brolly himself looked like Winnie-the-Pooh compared to the stern face italian stallion who, at the same time wouldn’t look out of place with a shell on his back at Seaworld.

But this was it. This was the era. We would be bigger than the big sides like Spain and Brazil. Except not as agile, skillful,  entertaining, dominating, determined or good looking as them.

2009. We were on the way to the golden chalice. The Holy Grail that is the World Cup is surely ours. The qualifiers probably could’ve been played by any Royal Oak Sunday side. Capello nearly offered to manage one of the teams playing against England to give them a fighting chance. Because that’s the man he is, always thoughtful and willing to help others, and never for money. Ever.

2010. This was the year of celebration, we all knew it. We expected it. The World Cup is just the start. The next step is world domination. Our greatness would eclipse our competitors to such an extent we would eventually only need 5 players on the pitch. And even then it would be 5 too many as the fear-striking England name would be enough to make the opposition curl into a ball and weep until we took their lunch money and made them say “uncle”. Earth would then be re-named “England” with Capello walking on water.

Hold on. One step at a time.

We arrive at the World Cup. We scrape through the group stage in what is a shaky start to our breakthrough campaign. Doubters start to surface and are immediately greeted by hostility and disgust by the Capello faithful, the Messiah will get us through this.

But get through we didn’t. The Capello empire crumbled and collapsed upon the mans very eyes as the demonic and evil force that is Germany rip through and destroy England like a child rips the wings off a squirming fly for their own twisted amusement.

Fabio is exiled. Statues depicting his greatness are torn down, burned, laughed at, then urinated on for effect. Fabio Capello was not the King anymore, he was the jester who’d taken everyone in England around for a cheap laugh.

2012. Fabio Capello resigns. The-little-italian-that-could went from hero to zero while practically achieving nothing but wasting everyones time and making us feel foolish in the process, as we probably all should’ve realised he made next to no progression in learning the English language in over four years.

Capello is now homeless and lives somewhere in Lancashire with his dog Rex whom he bought in return for a 6 pack of Carlsberg and 9 expired banana flavoured condoms.

Forty years of hurt and England fans are still awaiting the remedy.