FootballFan.Zone

Wayne Rooney saga only serves as a distraction to a greater problem

Wayne Rooney vs SloveniaEnglish football has gone through somewhat of a seismic shift in recent years. Over the period of the last couple of tournaments we’ve seen the remnants of the ill-fated ‘golden generation’ slowly slip away after several failed last hurrahs.

And it seemed as though everything was set up for England’s greatest ever goalscorer to get his very own final shot at glory in Russia in 2018. In midfield of course.

But with Rooney facing what looks like a premature ejection from at least the starting 11, it’s forced us to face the reality that we may have other problems.

It seems strange given recent evidence of how average we are as an overall footballing nation. But in the past weeks England fans have been prone to the line of thinking that, remove Wayne Rooney and everything will be fine again.

But so focussed have we been on this one issue, this one single pillar of our foundations, that we forgot that we’re actually, well, a bit rubbish really.

It’s as though we’re a homeowner, and while our house literally falls apart and becomes poorer around us, floorboards breaking, plaster crumbling from the walls, we’ve said “We really, really need to get rid of this old television, it’s holding us back.”

But when the Rooney’s gone we look around us and come to the stark realisation that compared to a few years ago, the building blocks that make up the team are potentially irrevocably damaged.

Compare the ‘spine’ of the team on Tuesday night in the 0-0 draw against Slovenia, Hart, Cahill, Stones, Dier, Henderson, Alli, Sturridge to that of tournaments less than a decade in the past and it makes for depressing reading.

It has to be said, that even with more star-studded names up and down the team we failed to achieve anything of note, but at least there was potential for it, or at least the possibility to HOPE for it.

While these names were perhaps made to seem better than they were by playing at, at the time, some of the top clubs in Europe competing for Champions League winners medals, they were at least playing at the very highest level.

Now if you glance at the team, not one of those players bar maybe John Stones has a chance at European success this season. It’s a worrying trend that the England average mean has dropped. Now the majority of our best players play for clubs not even in the Champions League, or y’know, Spurs.

Joe Hart is maybe the perfect microcosm of the larger issue. It’s almost as if his decline in both reputation and playing level has mirrored England’s as a whole.

What we must do now is accept England as average, and build a strategy from that viewpoint, maybe get in a manager who can organise us, make us hard to beat, someone like Sam All…oh, nevermind.

English football has gone through somewhat of a seismic shift in recent years. Over the period of the last couple of tournaments we’ve seen the remnants of the ill-fated ‘golden generation’ slowly slip away after several failed last hurrahs.

And it seemed as though everything was set up for England’s greatest ever goalscorer to get his very own final shot at glory in Russia in 2018. In midfield of course.

But with Rooney facing what looks like a premature ejection from at least the starting 11, it’s forced us to face the reality that we may have other problems.

It seems strange given recent evidence of how average we are as an overall footballing nation. But in the past weeks England fans have been prone to the line of thinking that, remove Wayne Rooney and everything will be fine again.

But so focussed have we been on this one issue, this one single pillar of our foundations, that we forgot that we’re actually, well, a bit rubbish really.

It’s as though we’re a homeowner, and while our house literally falls apart and becomes poorer around us, floorboards breaking, plaster crumbling from the walls, we’ve said “We really, really need to get rid of this old television, it’s holding us back.”

But when the Rooney’s gone we look around us and come to the stark realisation that compared to a few years ago, the building blocks that make up the team are potentially irrevocably damaged.

Compare the ‘spine’ of the team on Tuesday night in the 0-0 draw against Slovenia, Hart, Cahill, Stones, Dier, Henderson, Alli, Sturridge to that of tournaments less than a decade in the past and it makes for depressing reading.

It has to be said, that even with more star-studded names up and down the team we failed to achieve anything of note, but at least there was potential for it, or at least the possibility to HOPE for it.

While these names were perhaps made to seem better than they were by playing at, at the time, some of the top clubs in Europe competing for Champions League winners medals, they were at least playing at the very highest level.

Now if you glance at the team, not one of those players bar maybe John Stones has a chance at European success this season. It’s a worrying trend that the England average mean has dropped. Now the majority of our best players play for clubs not even in the Champions League, or y’know, Spurs.

Joe Hart is maybe the perfect microcosm of the larger issue. It’s almost as if his decline in both reputation and playing level has mirrored England’s as a whole.

What we must do now is accept England as average, and build a strategy from that viewpoint, maybe get in a manager who can organise us, make us hard to beat, someone like Sam All…oh, nevermind.

Hot Videos

See More Videos