The view that soccer is an edge of your seat thrill ride is like stating Sky Sports News hire their female presenters for their knowledge of sport. People are now coming to the reality that football is nothing more than a ninety minute definition of dullness saved only by extreme over-analyzation, endless transfer speculation and a very, very rare moment of skill. In a time when a player shows some kind promise, just cause they can round someone once, nutmeg Robert Huth, or run to the end-line faster than a Paul Gascoigne relapse, they immediately slap a price tag on them worth millions. Its no secret the Premier League is full of over paid players who, in all their glory, show week in week out just how ‘honest’ they are but ‘honest’ in this context is just another word for brutal. Even in apparently the greatest competition on Earth; the World Cup, with some of the best players of all time on show, the final was so uneventful the rain outside my window came as a welcome distraction to this half baked excuse for a sport. Today a good game of soccer is about one in fifty. Supporters of Chelsea and Man City have been accused of not filling their respective stadiums but this finger pointing will soon come full circle and things will become as they are in Italy; empty and less tortured by boredom. The talent pools everywhere are not what they were, too many bad players having their ego’s caressed by big wages leaving the heart being ripped from the game. Can you seriously name any decent on the pitch rivalries in the mould of Keane/Vieira or Drogba/Carragher? Players are too nice to each other and to an extent the Fifa fair play has taken all the fire from the game. The passion on the terraces and in the studios polishing over the banality on the pitch.
With their pens and electronic whiteboards Gary Neville, Ed Chamberlain, and Jamie Carragher make every Monday worse when they ponse on and squeeze any and every piece of scant excitement displayed in the usual nil all draw played out by two piss poor sides languishing in the lower half of the table. Then, they reflect over a ‘great’ weekend of premier league action; showing just how painfully bad professional footballers are at executing it’s very own etymology. Ten games of top tier action frequently bringing a astounding flood of six goals, and stats of fourteen shots with two on target somehow worthy of praise. Then, twice over the year Sky Sports News takes great pleasure in telling the public on transfer deadline day which players will change clubs and go on to hit the post several times in a career beset by injury and questionable talent. Jim White, to his credit, does fill the empty atmosphere of transfer dead-air day very admirably; sensationalizing how a club paying fifty million for a thirty one year old 6’7 English centre forward mystifiably incapable of heading the ball but with a mesmerizing record of 4 goals in an under fifteens indoor match is deemed a wondrous signing worth every penny. It says quite a bit about the state of the sport when many people, myself included, watch matches simply to listen to the RTE panel. Ex-players and managers views now rightfully more interesting than what goes on on the pitch. However, it’s only inevitable they run out of things to talk about and football clubs run out of money and return it to its heart which belongs on the pitch.