What do the Three Lions really mean to our football team?

Posted: June 23, 2010 in Uncategorized
Tags: , , , ,

Over the past week or so since the World Cup started a few things have dawned on me.  Firstly how average the majority of the games have been and secondly, the World Cup presents a fantastic opportunity for underdogs to shine on a global stage. 

What is it that makes a group of individuals rise up and create greatness as a unit?  How can eleven men, all from different parts of their native country who play for teams of varying degrees of quality come together to mould as one and go onto beat the best in the world?

Last Friday I watched one of the most disappointing England performances of my life.  This lacklustre display of football is what really inspired me to write this week’s blog.  There we had eleven men, all who display great class and skill in football week in week out for their club team’s, struggle to play as one.  It seemed as though Fabio Capello had picked eleven guys that had never met each other before and put them on the field expecting them to play as a team.  This got me thinking about what really makes a team.  It’s not just eleven men who walk onto a field wearing the same shirts under the banner of 3 lions.  It’s not those eleven men singing their national anthem knowing that they represent an entire nation that makes them a team.  What truly makes a team is a unity of minds bonded together under a common cause.  In this case the World Cup.  It is how the players bond with each other and how much they want to succeed that makes a difference on the field.  I feel that the current England team do not have that bond quite yet.  Perhaps our football team will continue much like our England Rugby team did in the 2007 World Cup where we started slowly but built up a magnificent pace taking us to the final?

It’s common knowledge that in any fight or match in life, it is the guy that is willing to go that extra mile, that is willing to endure pain in order to win that will come out on top.  And when I say come out on top I don’t necessarily mean win every time.  Yes, someone that is willing to push themselves to that extra level has more chance of wining than the guy who holds themselves back a little.  But what happens to a team or individual who fight their hardest to achieve something and still lose is something that only those that have been there can understand.  To lose but to have fought hard as a team, knowing that every man did their best despite losing creates a sense of self pride that is unlike any other.  Now I can only guess, but I’m pretty sure that this feeling of pride was completely absent in the England dressing room last Friday night.  That is what separates average teams from great teams.  The ability to give 110% and walk off with your heads held high regardless of the result.  This is something that every English man and woman expects of their fellow country men who represent our nation out in South Africa.  We don’t just hope for our players to go out each game and play well, we expect each and every player to walk out onto that pitch, focused and prepared to give blood sweat and tears in order to bring back the greatest glory that an English sports fan could ask for: The World Cup.  I’m posting this just mere hours before the do-or-die game against Slovenia that will determine our future in this competition.  Perhaps our English team should take some time before the game to watch highlights of Gazza’s heartfelt performance in the semi final of Italia 90.  His tears marked his place in history of a true English Lion.  Or let them watch David Beckham’s inspiring performance in the England vs Greece game in Oct 2001 that took us to the 2002 World Cup.  When you watch how passionately he played in that game, you can see that it wasn’t just his 93rd minute free kick that got us there.  Both of these examples show 2 men playing with their heart and soul.  They display the sort of self and national pride that I talk about above.  Now if only teams could render this type of passion into every game that they play, sport as we know it wouldn’t ever be the same again.



Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s