SEEING RED COLUMN: England fans are the ones who are really hurting

It's the hope that kills me when it comes to the England football team.

More fool me.

Our national side with its galaxy of multi-millionaires produced by the “greatest and best league” in the world couldn’t beat tiny Iceland – the country with more volcanoes than professional footballers.

There are many words to describe the latest failure by our super heroes, some we simply cannot print in this publication.

So we’ll stick with shambles – and what a shambles it was.

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Why as a footballing nation do some of us still believe we rule the world when it comes to the beautiful game?

Some of our finest exports to mainland Europe – a minority of our fans – still chirp on about winning one World Cup and two World Wars at the expense of the Germans. The same Germans who in the same time have won four World Cups and three European Championships.

That said, this side went into its latest major championship capitulation with very little expectation – which is a good job because they certainly delivered on that front.

So why do the products of arguably the best league in the world become duds when it matters?

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Former England striker Peter Crouch, working as a pundit for ITV, blamed our failure to progress in major championships on “pressure”.

Pressure? Don’t make me laugh?

I won’t go down a clichéd road of citing the average man on the street having to get up 6am in the morning to go to work to support his family, but what sort of pressure are we talking about here?

I’d love to swap places with Harry Kane, Joe Hart and Raheem Sterling and feel the pressure they are under.

I’m sure you would too.

I’m sure in a few weeks’ time some members of our star-studded national team will have recovered from their blip in France after a week or three poolside in some swanky villa.

Crouch also said the players will be hurting inside.


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The people who are hurting are the millions of football fans in this country who have supported our team through thick and thin – mainly thin.

Personally, I feel sorry for the thousands of England fans who have spent their well earned cash following Roy’s boys around the world over the last few years.

And what thanks do they get?

Nothing, just continued dross from a pampered, bunch of superstars who have no idea what sacrifices these men and women make to watch them miskick a bag of wind about.

Credit to Iceland. They did a job and our boys didn’t have the nous or footballing intelligence to outwit them.

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But could you imagine the Germans, or even the Welsh, having the same problems?

I very much doubt it?

Oh well, roll on the World Cup in two years’ time for another roller-coaster ride and ultimate failure.

Mind, we have to qualify first!