Tuesday, 14 October 2008

Ashley Cole gets booed by England fans

Why is it left to Danny Baker to say what all the pusillanimous pundits, hypocritical journalists and fantastically self-deluding, venal and contemptuous footballers failed in their duty to acknowledge?

Ashley Cole is a twat and deserves all the booing he gets. It is the right of the paying fans to give voice to their dissatifaction over a mistake made by an unpopular player, just as it is their right to display their delight at a top class performance from a popular player.

Do you think Ashley Cole likes football fans? Where do you think they come in the order of importance after his bank balance, his career, his fellow professionals and his celebrity? F***ing miles away. He treats fans with contempt, and doesn't care if he shows it, so why shouldn't the loathing be mutual?

Still, you wouldn't expect anything less from a top footballer nowadays - insulated from the real world from an early age, surrounded by sycophants, treated as if they are gods among men.

But the media?! Where was the pundit or journalist standing up for the fans? Why didn't anyone make the point that if you pour insane amounts of money and hype into the game, if you remove any possibility of shared identity between a fan and a player, and if that player doesn't make the slightest bit of effort to be anything other than a craven, mercenary, arrogant tosser, then the booing on Saturday afternoon was a refreshing inevitability.

It is the only way the fans have left of making their point heard, and to hear them dismissed so many times by so many hacks on 5live and in the newspapers was shameful.

I can only assume that a) they have relationships with clubs, players and sponsors to protect and therefore don't want criticise for fear of losing access or b) they've been freeloading for so long they've lost touch with reality.

As Danny Baker (cheekily) made the point on 5live on Tuesday night - what happened when Ashley Cole got booed? England got better. They woke up. They raised their game. They got a big boot up the backside and responded. They went from 2-1 up and playing badly to 5-1 up and winning comfortably.

As a result of this I am supporting Danny Baker's call for 30 seconds of sustained booing from the fans at the start of every match across the country this week, followed by random booing every 10 minutes thereafter.

If you want fans to stop booing, start delivering. Start caring. Take a bit more notice of the people you consider suckers and graft yourself a bit of respect.

Then you'll get the unquestioning adulation you think you deserve.

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