England versus Uruguay

England has 16 times as many people to choose a football team from as Uruguay

England has a GDP 45 times the size of Uruguay

England has three times as many top clubs in its league as Uruguay.

Result: Uruguay 2, England 1.


Any comments?

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  1. John E
    Posted June 20, 2014 at 6:43 am | Permalink

    Individuals can still make the difference.

    • A different Simon
      Posted June 20, 2014 at 10:17 am | Permalink

      As the commentator on council TV said Luis Suarez see’s everything at least a split second quicker than anyone else .

      I thought he was going to smash the second goal first time but that extra step he took might have made all the difference .

      Overall I’m proud of the way England tried to play and the spirit they showed .

      MUCH better than the sort of disinterested dross served up under Eriksen and Capello . Rooney seems to have got his hunger back under Hodgeson .

      Sturridge and Sterling showed they can do it on the big stage . Sad to see age finally catch up with Steven Gerrard .

      Would like to have seen Ricky Lambert start ahead of Danny Wellbeck and Oxlade Chamberlain used on the left .

    • Richard1
      Posted June 20, 2014 at 3:14 pm | Permalink

      Same with the rugby. NZ has c. 3m people

  2. Andyvan
    Posted June 20, 2014 at 6:46 am | Permalink

    England has 250 times as many know it alls offering opinions on how to run a team. Rather like they do with economic policies and with similar results.

  3. Anonymous
    Posted June 20, 2014 at 6:54 am | Permalink

    One would have thought, with four million dynamic new citizens to choose from in the last ten years, that we’d be storming the World Cup by now.

    Perhaps they can blame our footballing failures on our ageing population too. As they do the housing crisis, the pension crisis and the failing NHS.

    • Anonymous
      Posted June 20, 2014 at 7:04 am | Permalink

      As with education the UK working class has been deliberately trashed in the last 40 years.

      Football is a working class sport so has been most affected.

      (Athletics is not a team issue so the odd genius can rise to the top unaffected.)

      • A different Simon
        Posted June 20, 2014 at 10:03 am | Permalink

        Using “education” to limit a child and destroy their individuality and creativity is evil .

        It’s a national disgrace that there isn’t an outcry against this .

        The elites might have thought it was a good , expedient idea 50 years ago but as with so many things like renewable energy and the EU , they didn’t give sufficient consideration to the long term consequences .

        At least a child who goes into a football academy and neglects their education will escape the most damaging effects .

        I was glad to see my old class mate Chris Hohn received a knighthood .

        I think he is the only person from pleb town Addlestone to ever have been awarded a KBE .

        He has a completely different level of intellect to normal people . A true genius , possibly of the magician sub-type .

        His charity does a lot of stuff like challenging patents which prevent the third world getting the medicines and nutrition they need but I still think it’s a pity that he had to go into finance to make a difference .

        Can’t wait to see what he does with the remainder of his life .

  4. Old Albion
    Posted June 20, 2014 at 7:01 am | Permalink

    Sadly England lack the type of player who can do something ‘out of the blue’ who can turn a game in a moment.
    Players like Johan Cruyff, Lionel Messi, Paolo di Canio. Oh! and Luis Suarez.

    It is undeniable that the English game is now so full of foreign players, that English youngsters have less opportunity to thrive.
    The football clubs’ answer to success is ‘buy in the best’ for instant results.
    The root cause remains the massive amount of money that is now in the game at the highest level in all European football.

    • ken from glos
      Posted June 20, 2014 at 7:39 am | Permalink

      SPOT ON.

    • Anonymous
      Posted June 20, 2014 at 8:14 am | Permalink

      The Germans, Italians and French still do respectably.

    • zorro
      Posted June 20, 2014 at 6:15 pm | Permalink

      They just don’t play well as a team. They lack dynamism, all their shots until the goal were half hearted, lacking power. Only when Rooney scored did they quicken the pace. They are paid too much money and lack hunger for success.


      • zorro
        Posted June 20, 2014 at 6:16 pm | Permalink

        Overpaid individuals against a team working together?….No chance, asl Italy after their game against Costa Rica……Do the sums there John!


  5. margaret brandreth-j
    Posted June 20, 2014 at 7:07 am | Permalink

    quality v quantity?

  6. Peter Richmond
    Posted June 20, 2014 at 7:09 am | Permalink

    Just watching them sing the National Anthem at the beginning gave the impression that they were not really up for it. But I hear on the radio today that OFSTED are suggesting our state schools have long since given up on competitive sport so the true size of the pool from which we select players is severely reduced.

  7. Antisthenes
    Posted June 20, 2014 at 7:14 am | Permalink

    The lefty progressives have thrown the baby out with the bath water. They have dumb down everything in their ideological pursuits and changed society so that it no longer values that which put the word Great into Britain. Past values and standards had their flaws but not all so the answer was not as the left have implemented but a retention of those that were good and change of jettisoning of those that were not. Now it is all the governments fault and nothing is down to personal endeavour and pride in oneself.

    • Lifelogic
      Posted June 20, 2014 at 8:26 am | Permalink

      Indeed we even now have Alan Bennett (writer of popular, amusing, light theatre and tv sit coms) wittering on about the “fairness” of private schools and wanting to destroy them. Life is not fair, one might have thought Alan would have got over that by his age. Nor is it governments role to try to make it fair. Some are borne poor some rich, some sick some healthy, some in the UK some in war torn Africa, some with alcoholic parents some with loving caring ones. Such is life get over it.

      Of course we should try to give everyone good opportunities where we can. But what is fair about a man living in a delightful multi-million pound house in Primrose Hill while families of 6+ live in tiny flats in Hackney – perhaps he might ask himself this and take in some lodgers.

      Would he really allow people to buy porches, alcohol and endless other frivolities but not pay to educate their children.

      Anyway state school pupils (with the same grades) do rather better are University anyway just as one would expect.

      • Bazman
        Posted June 20, 2014 at 5:04 pm | Permalink

        Some are made sick poor and uneducated by government policy and subsidising private schools at the expense of state schools is not really fair. It is the governments job to aim for equality of opportunity and not make it more difficult to attain a decent standard of living just because you are from a disadvantaged background. I know you believe in a financial aristocracy and their divine right to rule, but this is not what democracy is about and will not help the vast majority of the population. It is deluded and wrong much like yourself as Daily Mail poster boy.

        • Bazman
          Posted June 21, 2014 at 9:58 pm | Permalink

          No reply? You know what you can do with it don’t you?

        • Edward2
          Posted June 22, 2014 at 8:04 am | Permalink

          If you choose to send your children to private schools and pay to do so instead of taking advantage of free state education then you are subsidising state schools.
          To say the opposite is a nonsense

          PS Do try to be less rude and abusive Baz, tackle the ball not the man.

          • Bazman
            Posted June 23, 2014 at 4:21 pm | Permalink

            The taking a Taxi is helping public transport argument. Total pants. Politics is personal and I take it personally. I feel free to hack the legs from under the opponent to get the ball.

          • Edward2
            Posted June 23, 2014 at 10:55 pm | Permalink

            Well under the rules you would first be booked and then sent off for your agression and banned for a period of time Baz
            Then perhaps you might learn to play by the rules.

      • zorro
        Posted June 20, 2014 at 6:18 pm | Permalink

        Lots of people have talent, a lot is often unrealised, people just have to find their mojo jojo!


  8. Peter van Leeuwen
    Posted June 20, 2014 at 7:28 am | Permalink

    Comment with UKIP flavour 🙂
    It is all due to this flawed immigration policy of the government. Allowing scores of migrant workers from the EU and elsewhere (Suarez, Van Persie etc.) steal the jobs of our own home-grown football players makes this proud country weak internationally, as we witnessed last night. No doubt this is due to some conspiracy by the antidemocratic likes of Barroso, Van Rompuy and Juncker, who only want to wipe England from the map of the earth. 🙂 🙂

    Honestly, it was a very exiting match and very unlucky for Wayne Rooney who had a few near goals. However, this football is hardly a sport but more like bread and games for the masses, with lots of money involved. It may inspire patriotism (going crazy in orange or painting the St George’s Cross on your face) but it should not be taken seriously and only be festive. More money should be siphoned of and go to good causes.

    • Anonymous
      Posted June 20, 2014 at 8:21 am | Permalink

      Peter – We’d welcome the offerings of these talented migrants in our national football team. Truly.

      But where are the results ?

      The much vaunted benefits of mass migration (particularly into our working class and their sport) simply fail to manifest themselves when pressure tested in a global team event. The one that happens to be most important to the working classes themselves.

      (BTW millions upon millions of pounds are put at stake in sponsorship and retail stocks on the back of England’s performance – so not such a trivial matter. )

      • Anonymous
        Posted June 20, 2014 at 8:24 am | Permalink

        Peter – And I’m glad that you yourself point out the panem et circenses involved in distracting our people from the things that really should matter to England.

        • Peter van Leeuwen
          Posted June 20, 2014 at 3:02 pm | Permalink

          @Anonymous: Migration doesn’t help the working class, it may help the overall economy though. If you give Suarez an English (British) passport, maybe he’ll play in your national team?

          • Anonymous
            Posted June 20, 2014 at 9:49 pm | Permalink

            Allowing Suarez a British passport to play football for us would be selective immigration and few people in Britain are against that (especially UKIP, as you mentioned the organisation in your first comment.)

            I disagree that mass, uncontrolled immigration is good for our economy. Please explain how this can be so ?

            I live here and see the results. The majority of the population are against it so clearly are not witnessing the benefit to the overall economy that you say should be there.

    • David Murfin
      Posted June 20, 2014 at 8:30 am | Permalink

      Definitely an exiting match!
      (Sorry – anyone can make a typo, but I couldn’t resist it)

      • Peter van Leeuwen
        Posted June 20, 2014 at 2:54 pm | Permalink

        @David Murfin: slightly dyslectic but I’m happy to learn every day 🙂

        • Bazman
          Posted June 20, 2014 at 5:04 pm | Permalink

          You can write with both hands?

          • Anonymous
            Posted June 21, 2014 at 8:56 am | Permalink

            He can write with both hands at the same time, Bazman … double Dutch !

    • Mark
      Posted June 20, 2014 at 12:00 pm | Permalink

      Is there so much orange on Dutch streets at the moment because of the football or Koningsdag – or is it both?

      • Peter van Leeuwen
        Posted June 20, 2014 at 2:57 pm | Permalink

        @Mark: I’d say it still rather subdued. The Dutch don’t want to get there hopes up too much this time. Kingsday was in April.

        • Anonymous
          Posted June 20, 2014 at 9:56 pm | Permalink

          We had plenty of people wearing orange face paint in Britain too, Peter. Mainly women attending Royal Ascot this week.

    • Robert Taggart
      Posted June 24, 2014 at 10:25 am | Permalink

      Back in the ’70’s/’80’s/early ’90’s – the foreign players in the English game could be counted on two hands (other Brits being foreign). One hand would suffice for the overtly foreign players (mostly ‘continentals – particularly Danish and Dutch).

      Result ? England failed to even qualify for the ’74; ’78 and ’94 World Cup Finals !

      PvL – methinks you Dutchies have a lot to answer for – Muhren, Thijssen, Zondervan… !

  9. Lifelogic
    Posted June 20, 2014 at 7:36 am | Permalink

    Good individual talents, but not a team. Dreadful passing and a lack of empathy/understanding/second sense between the players.

    Not enough practice as a team working together. Perhaps too comfortable also and not quite so hungry to win as others.

    • Anonymous
      Posted June 20, 2014 at 8:29 am | Permalink

      Telepathy is the word I think you were reaching for, Lifelogic.

      • zorro
        Posted June 20, 2014 at 6:21 pm | Permalink

        Keegan and Toshack used to have telepathic powers. I remember them doing the Krypton Factor to prove it. Must be true!


    • Lifelogic
      Posted June 20, 2014 at 9:10 am | Permalink

      I assume the Cameron/BBC think solution would be:- not to recruit on merit at all and have 50% of the team at least female and 10% with learning or other difficulties and some places reserved for members of certain religions. Also to give them all perhaps 12 months paid maternity or paternity leave and make it impossible to dismiss them for being unable to play well (after all they just need more help and re-training). Just as he does with the rest of industry.

      Also to have far more government intervention and tax payers money in the whole process.

    • Lifelogic
      Posted June 20, 2014 at 9:34 am | Permalink

      I see we now have Helen Grant with delightful diplomacy tell everyone:

      No passport? Holiday at home, says tourism minister.

      Helen’s claim to fame seems to be being the first black woman selected as a Tory candidate. She also had very interestingly large MP’s expense claims and now tells people this. Rather sums up Cameron’s government. This is what you get if you arrange the ministers as if arranging flowers, rather than on ability and common sense.

      • Lifelogic
        Posted June 20, 2014 at 9:35 am | Permalink

        Not only do he do it he want to legislate to force industry to do it too!

        • Bazman
          Posted June 20, 2014 at 5:55 pm | Permalink

          Same laughable Tory mentality. Have nothing and be happy with it unless it applies to me.
          Must be forcing industry and government to employ a lot of Etonians judging by their performance.

  10. Nick
    Posted June 20, 2014 at 7:41 am | Permalink

    Oh good. John talking numbers.

    So John.

    How about that pensions debt number we’ve been promised?

    Do you really owe 7,100 bn for the pensions?

    1,300 bn for the borrowing

    350 bn for PFI.

    150 bn for cleaning up nuclear power station.

    All bar the borrowing excluded from books contrary to the accounting standards.

    300,000 per tax payer and rising rapidly.

    Median tax payer on 26.5K a year.

  11. Iain Moore
    Posted June 20, 2014 at 7:42 am | Permalink

    It means the British establishment will be spared having to say the hated word England a few days earlier, meantime they can glory in our demise and joyously associate England with failure.

    But more importantly, what was your view to Cameron’s answer to the question Gisla Stewart put to him in PMQs about devolution in the non country England, where your dear leader outline his agenda to turn the unmentionable country into city fiefdoms.

    When was this back door balkanisation of England debated and agreed? I don’t remember ever being asked. But of course Cameron won’t ever have to worry about any scrutiny of policy for England because the squatters sitting in English constituency seats don’t care what happens to here.

  12. Bryan
    Posted June 20, 2014 at 8:12 am | Permalink

    School playing fields sold off.

    Boys can no longer kick a ball about in the streets

    Cheaper for teams to bring in players from abroad

    Owners require ‘instant’ success.

    All UK countries have a National Anthem except England which is ‘stuck’ with the tribute to the Royal Family. Hardly chest swelling in the heat of Brazil.

    But mainly, in the UK, sport is no longer the pathway out of poverty.

  13. David
    Posted June 20, 2014 at 8:15 am | Permalink

    England wasn’t good at defending its territory and inspired little confidence going forward.

    • zorro
      Posted June 20, 2014 at 6:24 pm | Permalink

      Useful metaphor for England as a whole!


  14. margaret brandreth-j
    Posted June 20, 2014 at 8:23 am | Permalink

    Don’t be naive. It is big business. Ths attempt to belittle won’t work.

  15. David
    Posted June 20, 2014 at 8:28 am | Permalink

    How about football being like cricket and having a limit on overseas players?
    After all India has 20 times more people than England and our results against them are a lot better than our results in. Also could we put Lord MacLaurin in charge of the FA – he did good job in cricket.

    • Bryan
      Posted June 20, 2014 at 2:11 pm | Permalink

      As the English cricket team is populated with players born in other countries, does this mean we get to pick Suarez etc for our soccer team?

      Bring it on and we shall rule the world!

  16. English Pensioner
    Posted June 20, 2014 at 8:34 am | Permalink

    Too many of the footballers in our top teams aren’t English and so aren’t eligible to play for England. Football clubs, like the NHS and many other organisations, can’t be bothered to train players and buy them in from elsewhere. In addition, we don’t seem to have a team but a collection of individuals who are more concerned about themselves than the team.

  17. Handbags
    Posted June 20, 2014 at 8:45 am | Permalink

    There are many more oportunities in the UK than in Uruguay.

    Intelligent people don’t play football – they have better things to do – football is for the plebs.

  18. Neil Craig
    Posted June 20, 2014 at 8:58 am | Permalink

    Time was we Scots did that regularly too.

    Still you can’t hope to be best at everything and the fact that Britain is 3rd in the world for scientific citations (the US & China being 1 & 2 but per capita well behind) and Scotland, along with Switzerland, is the best per capita worldwide gives me far more pride than football or Olympics. Wish it got more media coverage too.

  19. Bryan
    Posted June 20, 2014 at 9:01 am | Permalink

    And another – Elite has become a ‘dirty’ word by those on the left and otherwise social engineers.

  20. adams
    Posted June 20, 2014 at 9:05 am | Permalink

    Yes but Uruguay got twice as many goals . the important point . I did not watch the match as I can not bear to watch most football matches these days let alone England (who I always expect to disappoint ) . My solution ? Make me manager !
    Football is very simple . First aim ? score goals . Second aim ? stop the opposition scoring . No goals are scored by passing sideways in your own half or passing back to the goalkeeper . England do that constantly . there is no substitute for a man who can run straight at a defence and make that decisive break . These are the men who must be favoured . So many crosses into the penalty area by England are literally passes to the opposition via their goalkeeper . such simple nonsense is repeated time and time again .
    defenders should never ” sell themselves ” . They must always keep their bodies between their own goal and the attacker . much more to say but that is enough for now .
    All obvious stuff but these expensive players do not implement them . SAd ,sad, sad

  21. Elliot Kane
    Posted June 20, 2014 at 9:36 am | Permalink

    The last manager we had who really came close to winning anything was Terry Venables, way back in 1996. His team played really well together, but it was a team he forged from a couple of great players and several solid players rather than a team of amazing individual talents.

    I think this is where England goes wrong as a team these days – they do not actually play very well AS a team. Certain players, IMO, are chosen because of their names, not because of anything they’ve ever managed to do in an England shirt.

    I think the biggest problem, however, lies with the FA. The same mentality of the people who fled from Venables just in case he might lose a court case (Which, IIRC, he won) and thus cost England a very good manager is still very prevalent: the idea that the good reputation of the FA is vastly more important than anything so trivial as winning a game of football!

    This idea of not ‘rocking the boat’ is normally found in any business that is in terminal decline. Things must be done in a certain way because they have always been done that way and that’s that. There is no actual understanding of what they are doing in such a business, and I think the same is true of the FA. Thus they seem to always select their managers by asking themselves who is a ‘jolly good chap’ rather than who can do the job.

    The FA clings to managers who do not seem able to get the best out of the England team (HOW long did they desperately cling to Sven?) because they do not seem capable of admitting to their own mistakes. All about reputation, you see? Losing is a far lesser thing than having to admit they were wrong!

    In short, the FA is the real problem. If England want to start winning, we need people at the very top who are more interested in the reputation of English football than they are in the reputation of the FA; we need people who really, truly, want to win.

    Maybe people like that would realise that England needs a manager who can inspire the best from their players. That way we might get a Venables or a Redknapp in charge – someone who truly understands the English game and might actually get us somewhere.

    This, I think, is the real difference between England and Uruguay. The people at the top in Uruguay want to win the World Cup. The people at the top in England don’t care about winning as long as everyone thinks they are ‘decent chaps’.

  22. Bert Young
    Posted June 20, 2014 at 9:39 am | Permalink

    It was not until 3/4’s of the match had gone that we showed any real attacking aggression . If there was a game plan it did not show . There is a plethora of choice available to the selectors but it has to show in the way they play and perform as a team . Once the game was under way , Uraguay demonstrated that ” will to win ” ; we only came to our senses in the last 10 minutes . PvL – good luck to Holland ; they have the guts , determination and skill to reach the final !

  23. Max Dunbar
    Posted June 20, 2014 at 9:45 am | Permalink

    I’m not interested in football but I do remember the 1966 World Cup which England won of course. We were on a family holiday in Italy at the time and everyone was glued to the hotel television which had been specially set up in the lounge for the occasion.

  24. ian wragg
    Posted June 20, 2014 at 9:53 am | Permalink

    On today’s news a joker was bewailing the fact that state schools don’t do well at sports and schools with a competitive nature do well academically. I think we knew this 50 years ago when I was at school.
    Now comprehensives have spent the last 50 years rubbishing competitive sport and dumbing down the syllabus is it any wonder we don’t win any team sports.
    Not to mention the sale of sports fields to build houses on.

  25. bill
    Posted June 20, 2014 at 9:57 am | Permalink

    Had we played Uruguay first and Italy second, the results would have been different. The margin between best and the rest is very small as those matches between Premiership and Championship sides shows. If we continue in the direction we are going and at the same time limit in some way foreign players in the Premier League, we may improve as a national team over time.

  26. Jerry
    Posted June 20, 2014 at 10:19 am | Permalink

    How many non Uruguayan players are their in the Uruguayan football leagues compared to the English leagues, how many matches pre season, and at what point does international competitions fall within their season, pre season, mid season or post season when any professional league player would normally be resting – oh and not forgetting “Home” advantage, Latitude speaking…

    Perhaps we just play far to much football, and no it’s not just the English leagues, look at Spain.

  27. Ernest Rylatt
    Posted June 20, 2014 at 10:21 am | Permalink

    Guido Fawkes has the true answer – Gordon Brown

    • Bazman
      Posted June 20, 2014 at 5:50 pm | Permalink

      What position did he play?

    • zorro
      Posted June 20, 2014 at 6:30 pm | Permalink

      No!!!!!….. The curse of Jonah! …. When did he wish the England team luck?


  28. GnosticBrian
    Posted June 20, 2014 at 10:30 am | Permalink

    Because the socialist answer of indiscriminately using money and people is totally ineffective with those problems that require talent to solve.

  29. James Matthews
    Posted June 20, 2014 at 11:08 am | Permalink

    We have an ageing population and have increasingly become a nation who watch sport, especially team games, rather than play. Not that football really matters much. The main reason for doing well in international football is that it really annoys the Scots. No worries though, after this they will assuredly get even more apoplectic when we mention 1966.

    The fact that we keep losing wars and get steadily more incompetent in foreign affairs though – that is a real concern.

    • zorro
      Posted June 20, 2014 at 6:39 pm | Permalink

      I am not a proponent of foreign escapades as you may have gleaned from my posts…..However, we have not lost any wars in recent years, because we have not been fighting any wars in the true sense of the word. In the field of battle, the British Army is one of the best in the world, but they have not been fighting wars in recent years….


      • James Matthews
        Posted June 21, 2014 at 8:25 pm | Permalink

        Well if you say so, but Iraq and Afghanistan both look like wars to me. I do not blame our armed forces. The buck stops with the politicians, both for strategic misdirection and for starving them of resources (not just equipment but, crucially, numbers – boots on the ground matter). We (the UK and USA) clearly failed to meet our objectives in either country and have extricated ourselves by declaring a famous victory and departing. War is the continuation of diplomacy by other means. If you employ you armed forces to this end, as we did in these to countries, but fail to achieve your objectives, you have lost.

        Arguably had we had the political will and the financial and military resources to go on for another ten years or so we might have won, but losing is still losing.

  30. Excalibur
    Posted June 20, 2014 at 11:15 am | Permalink

    The EPL is played at 100 miles an hour with crisp on the turf passing. Why the national side does not adopt this defies my understanding. Much of last evenings game looked like League 2 quality.

  31. Aatif Ahmad
    Posted June 20, 2014 at 11:18 am | Permalink

    England expects every man to do his duty. Uruguay is more chilled out and you can easily join a football game being played in the street.

    England’s GDP may be 45 times Uruguay, but what about England’s debt? 500% of GDP. Versus Uruguay’s c. 70%.

    Anyone can achieve high levels of GDP/growth by loading current generations with enormous debts. It doesn’t lead to lasting growth.

  32. David Hope
    Posted June 20, 2014 at 11:28 am | Permalink

    Who knows! Maybe football is the dominant sport from when people are young there whereas here people might go into rugby, or tennis, or athletics etc and have less focus.

    There has also been criticism for quite a few years of the technical quality in English football (although it seems to be improving.)
    We have had a culture whereby those kids who play in school teams play competitively from very young and everything is about getting a result in front of angry parents! What follows is physical long ball football and we don’t produce too many people like Luis Suarez. I’ve read that many other countries in Europe and South America allow children and teenagers the time to learn the technical skills and don’t worry about result until later on.

  33. Brigham
    Posted June 20, 2014 at 11:32 am | Permalink

    I’m always struck by the inability of the English footballer to control the ball. As an Arsenal supporter I was amazed when Fabregas joined the team. He was always in space, and no matter how the ball came to him he had it under control immediately. Rooney has no ball ability, that is why I think he should be a striker only. Even Gerrard, possibly our best player has not the ball skills of a Brazilian street urchin.

  34. Eddie Hill
    Posted June 20, 2014 at 11:41 am | Permalink

    People have said it all below, but to sum up:
    • Some premiership teams do not field one single English player in their squads, leave alone their starting elevens;
    • Southampton has shown that it is possible to develop young English players who can play at the highest level if coached properly, why can’t other clubs do that?
    • The FA, EUFA and FIFA are all either (questionable ed) and/ or incompetent, and spend all their money on the wrong things, including grandiose offices and organisation structures. What they are not doing is putting any money where it counts;
    • Trevor Brooking was recruited by the FA years ago to push development of young players – what is happening there?
    • FIFA has $1 billion in the bank, which Blatter says is a reserve, but against which eventualities, he won’t be drawn, Given that some of that money has come from poor nations, wouldn’t it be better-used going back into the game in those countries?
    • At present, UK pay-per-view subscribers are paying to develop foreign players, which is all wrong, especially as once developed, they take enormous wages back to their own countries;
    • In addition to the pot of gold that TV companies are pouring down the gullets of foreign players, clubs are also pouring money down the gullets of agents, who have ruined the modern game, which has come to resemble organised crime rather than our national sport;
    • etc ed

  35. MartinC
    Posted June 20, 2014 at 11:56 am | Permalink

    The European Commission needs to publish a harmonised football quality standard as soon as possible, applicable to all Member States, with compliance comprising all EU national teams being demonstrably as good as those of Germany and Holland by say 2017. This may well require significant investment. Should we fail to comply then we would quite properly be subject to EU enforcement/infraction proceedings.

  36. Terry
    Posted June 20, 2014 at 11:57 am | Permalink

    In football, size does not matter. Talent, teamwork and determination rule that game.

    Our team are not much more than Prima Donnas who managed to play well for their own clubs but cannot get it together for their country. Perhaps, for a change, our team needs a tough manager who selects less prominent but nevertheless, talented players more determined to win for their country.

  37. Bob
    Posted June 20, 2014 at 12:21 pm | Permalink

    I couldn’t care less about anything related to professional football, I’ll leave that to the mugs that fund the overpaid participants of the profession, but at least this might divert attention from the article in the Mail yesterday about non-EU migrants using the EU as a “back door” route to the UK.

    It’s taken the Border Agency a while to discover something that the average Joe has known about for years.

  38. Martin
    Posted June 20, 2014 at 12:33 pm | Permalink

    Too worried about a sudden unexpected surge in Lib Dem support and the resulting Mansion Tax? Or perhaps other tax matters http://www.theguardian.com/politics/2013/jun/20/construction-scheme-tax-footballers ?

    P.S. You might be interested to learn that since the council tax was frozen in Scotland the amount of Tax collected has gone up! http://www.scotland.gov.uk/Resource/0045/00453148.pdf

    • Bazman
      Posted June 21, 2014 at 6:19 pm | Permalink

      Obviously anyone who supports a mansion tax is just jealous you would have us believe? Not at all concerned about their involvement in tax scams such as this and the mansion tax being more difficult avoid? They where more diligent at chasing payment in Scotland if you read it properly and not make up the facts as you want them to be. A lesson that should be taken on board here against corporate toll avoiders and benefit cheats. Agree?

      • Cliff. Wokingham
        Posted June 22, 2014 at 10:40 am | Permalink


        Just a polite couple of questions for you so that I can determine how you of the left think:

        1) Why do you feel feel that someone who lives in a big house should pay tens of thousands of pounds a year ON TOP of their very high council tax? Please don’t just say because they can afford it; I can afford to buy a bottle of booze for my local alcoholic but why should I.

        2) Would you like to see everyone live in a big house and have lots of money or do you just want to drag the wealthy down to the level of the poor?

        3) Why do you feel success or making the most of a talent is such a bad thing?

        Thank you in anticipation of your polite rely which, I hope will not include “ram it” or any other rude or offensive acronym about those of us that don’t support your political views.

        • Edward2
          Posted June 22, 2014 at 8:22 pm | Permalink

          Taxing those who own assets and making them pay cash each year based on a percentage of an arbitrary value set by the State is a Marxist method to bring about a socialist paradise Cliff.
          So much more tidy than the old fashioned guiloutine

        • Bazman
          Posted June 23, 2014 at 4:32 pm | Permalink

          It is one of the few taxes that is difficult avoid. Foreign billionaire are using property to often hide and store wealth from their own countries authorities at the expense of the Citizen living here and to evade that countries regime and tax systems. Russia being a prime example of this. We live in a democracy and democracies need progressive taxation systems to make them work and the top rate of about 3k is not enough they spend this on a meal. The argument you put forward is if we were in their position we would not like to pay it. Not a real argument and how likely are you able to afford a multi million pound house? You are sympathetic to peole who could not cre less and are tighter than Scrooge in many cases. A deluded apologist like edward is with his communism for the rich ideas.

          • Edward2
            Posted June 23, 2014 at 11:04 pm | Permalink

            Ive read your garbled badly written post several times and it still makes no sense.
            Your smug belief that it is only you that has any correct opinions and all others are deluded is typical of the left wing of politics who end up arresting and imprisoning all those who dare to disagree with them.

            Well Baz you are not right and we will not be silenced.

          • Cliff. Wokingham.
            Posted June 24, 2014 at 9:43 am | Permalink

            Thank you Bazman for your reply; I agree that a tax on property is difficult to avoid.

            The problem is though Baz, many of us who have valuable property are not cash rich; my property is really only an asset if my wife and I decide to “cash it in” and sell it and, to be honest, at our age it would be far too much hassle to do so.
            Many people have seen their homes, yes homes not property/assets/investments/tax avoidance schemes, rise in value….When I left London in 1968 and moved to Berkshire, my home in London’s East End was only worth a couple of Thousand Pounds, now it is worth over One Million Pounds, but it is still the same house. I have relatives who still live in that same street who worked in every day, manual jobs but now find themselves sitting on valuable property. Bearing in mind, those manual workers purchased their homes using earned and taxed income, why should they now be subject to a vindictive, “let’s soak the rich” tax when they are not, by any definition, rich?

            Perhaps a property or mansion tax for wealthy foreigners may be workable, but the present and previous Labour governments have tried to woo rich foreigners into the country.

            I think the fundamental problem regarding tax is that, this and the previous government, complicated our tax code which has allowed people and businesses to avoid tax LEGALLY…..Of course, tax evasion is still illegal and should be punished through the courts but, in my opinion, using the media and government ministers to fudge the difference between evasion and avoidance helps no one in fact, all it does is wind up and rabble rouse the ordinary, mostly ignorant (in relation to tax) population.,

            Perhaps Baz, while we’re having this civilized conversation, do you feel you could give me your thoughts on part (2) of my original post to you?

            Again, I thank you in anticipation of your reply.

          • Bazman
            Posted June 26, 2014 at 6:06 pm | Permalink

            All for the bedroom tax are we? Making the most poor and vulnerable pay more, but not a bedroom tax for the wealthy?
            You are being pushed out for being wealthy, at least on paper you are, many are being pushed out for being poor you both have a choice. You will not be dragged down to the level of the poor this is a disingenuous argument The area has become to expensive for you and you are asking for benefits. It’s the old argument of the old woman living in a mansion and the rates system being organised around her, but is really to defend the rich. Will not wash. She should move and free up her property like you should or pay your bedroom tax.
            As for you Edward. You make no points and are unable understand anything in you fight for fairness for the wealthy an oppressed underclass in this country. Can you understand this post?

            Reply Higher rates of Council are a bedroom tax on the better off

      • Cliff. Wokingham.
        Posted June 27, 2014 at 4:37 pm | Permalink


        Thank you for your reply.

        For your information, I oppose the bedroom tax. In many ways, both the bedroom tax and the mansion tax are similar things in so far as, they forget that the property is not just an asset or a building, it is someone’s home which has many memories for the person living there.

        The thing which makes the so called bedroom tax unfair is this; the tax is imposed without the tenant being offered an alternative home to avoid that tax. I suspect, many who are on benefits and have a spare room are perhaps too poor to be able to move without some kind of financial assistance.
        I personally feel one spare room should not be an issue nor should it attract the levy; even unemployed people should be able to put up for a night or two their friends or grandchildren etc. If say, a widow or widower, have a four bed roomed council house which was appropriate at the time of them raising their family, but now find them-self alone in such a house, perhaps then a case could be argued for expecting them to take a more appropriately sized home for their needs if they’re on long term benefits but again, often these houses are their homes with many cherished memories and sentimental meaning to them so, I can see it from both sides. I still feel that if the state decides to go down such a route, it should offer an assisted move package and no levy should be applied until and unless the tenant has turned down suitable alternative accommodation.

        I do not see what benefit I am asking for just because I question whether or not a bullying state should just decide to take a vast sum of money from me just because I have a nice house…..Again, it is not just a building, it is a home with memories etc.

        Too many of the left see people’s wealth and assets as something the state should take away and replace them with a level of “pocket money” of which the state approves.

        Again I ask Baz, do you want the poor to be rich or do you just want the rich to be poor as per my original Number ” question?

        I am a staunch Conservative (not of the Cameron type) but, I do, just like our host, have a conscience.

        I notice from your last reply that your tone is starting to get a tad more agitated and hope this does not cause you to resort to nasty name calling as witnessed in the past. Let’s keep it civil and again, I thank you in anticipation.

  39. Crazed Weevil
    Posted June 20, 2014 at 1:08 pm | Permalink

    I did find it ironic that after the city of Liverpool complained about Ed Miliband holding up a free copy of the Sun newspaper supporting the England team, it was a Liverpool F.C. player that is potentially responsible for knocking us out of the tournament (or two if you include the chap who made the mistake that cost the second goal).

    • Bazman
      Posted June 21, 2014 at 2:51 pm | Permalink

      It was Miliband holding up a copy of the Sun that offended them. The boycott of The Sun is symbolic, and after 23 years it is still as strong as ever on Merseyside. He was ill advised to do this.

  40. formula57
    Posted June 20, 2014 at 1:22 pm | Permalink

    The nucleus of the England team is from Liverpool Football Club – and yet the one player from that club most responsible for its success last season (scoring the goals) was not part of that nucleus, rather he played for Uruguay.

  41. Eddie Hill
    Posted June 20, 2014 at 1:53 pm | Permalink

    Furthermore, at my son’s school a few weeks ago, an impromptu football match between some Year 5s on the school field, ended with a punch being thrown. Did the head accept that boys will be boys, take them aside, have a quick word, get them to apologise and shake hands?
    No, she banned EVERYBODY from playing on the school field.
    This is a clear response to the absurd attitude taken towards children that they shouldn’t be allowed to run around and play in case one of them falls over and the parents sue the school.
    I can’t help thinking that this sort of thing doesn’t happen in Uruguay, or more ot the point, Costa Rica.

    • zorro
      Posted June 20, 2014 at 6:44 pm | Permalink

      No, she banned EVERYBODY from playing on the school field…..hmmmm…..liberals….scratch the surface to reveal the (authoritarian ed)!


    • petermartin2001
      Posted June 21, 2014 at 5:49 am | Permalink

      Yes I know the type! Not only have they helped b****r up the English football team they helped do the same thing to the British Labour Party!

      Take a look at Labourlist sometime. There was one article recently which suggested a new slogan for the Labour Party as “Devolution Works”. The powers-that-be in the party then wonder why their supporters are now so apathetic. The think they’re in need of such things as, and I kid you not, of ‘comprehensive democracy portals’.

      We may well have all disagreed with Old Labour from time to time, but at least they didn’t speak in political cliches and weren’t averse to an occasional punch up themselves.

  42. Lindsay McDougall
    Posted June 20, 2014 at 2:15 pm | Permalink

    My prediction before the match was England 3 Suarez 2. Well, I got half of it right and Rooney might have scored a hat trick.

    If you are looking for a Jungian explanation, perhaps the fact that English nationalism has been under a cloud since 1st January 1973 may have something to do with it.

    But let’s keep it simple. Suarez is a world class striker and our centre backs are not world class.

  43. Wireworm
    Posted June 20, 2014 at 2:18 pm | Permalink

    I’m no expert but I get the impression players are chosen for the England team on the basis of their prowess in the League. Fair enough, you might think. But it doesn’t mean they can translate their skills to the national team. They also need to be able to commit. Watching them all getting off the team bus with their earphones in place makes you realise they are in a world of their own. They may be reachable for the purposes of highly remunerated club play, but otherwise they are clearly out to lunch. That is the ethos, unfortunately. The Germans understand this perfectly and select players who can form a team, even if on paper they do not have the best records.

  44. Eddie Hill
    Posted June 20, 2014 at 3:02 pm | Permalink

    Plus, obviously, 25% of our adults are obese, so doesn’t that make it that Uruguay effectively only has 12 times more people to choose from than us?

    I was never any good at maths …………

  45. A different Simon
    Posted June 20, 2014 at 4:58 pm | Permalink

    One thing is very noticeable by it’s absence this W.C .

    The almost complete lack of Cross of St George flags waving from cars and in peoples windows .

    This must be an indication of how downtrodden and disheartened the English have become under the foreign governments in London and Brussels .

    I wonder whether Cameron’s focus groups have clocked this ?

    If any of them are reading this then perhaps you might like to offer me a job ?

    My rates are very reasonable .

  46. acorn
    Posted June 20, 2014 at 5:02 pm | Permalink

    I think there is still a lot of basic animal spirit in that little country. Ok, its GDP per Capita in still half that of the UK. But it now has a modern style of executive; legislature and judiciary.

    All things that are missing in the UK. A while back there was a Gallop survey in the Us that asked the two prime questions. Answers were (a) 68 percent of Americans knew someone who had lost a job and (b); 55 percent of Americans didn’t think their children would live as well as they did; that was the worst rate in the history of the survey. I would expect to see similar results in the UK.

    Overcoming the UK’s mass economic despondency and the subsequent debilitating lack of progress or innovation within its governance; institutions and basic organizations, may well be impossible. History tells us all empires decline this way.

  47. Bazman
    Posted June 20, 2014 at 5:47 pm | Permalink

    My 8 year old daughter predicted the score on the basis of: “Thats what happend last time!” Ah! How the bookies would have laughed at the lack of insight and professionalism. Should have put a tenner on it…
    As a non football person some of the Englands individuals skill was impressive. Looked a bit rich, fat and pasty looking compared to the other side and believing they are as good as what they are told .
    The problem was I think, the level of compensation and remuneration offered to each player is dire. Self respect and winning the world cup is no incentive whatsoever or at the very least much overrated.
    Phil Neville: Whats this? Bazman the substitute centre forward? Middle aged metal worker only started to play football last week. Lineker: And with no experience at international level! It’s certainly unotherdox, but nothing in the rules says Roy Hogeson can’t do it!
    You know where I can be found. Barmaid said she would have a go too, but refuses to run around with her shirt over her face if she scores. Pity.

  48. Julian
    Posted June 20, 2014 at 5:52 pm | Permalink

    Its partly because Uruguay only does 2 things – banking and football. Like New Zealand only does sheep and rugby!

  49. Richard
    Posted June 20, 2014 at 8:49 pm | Permalink

    I think England made three tactical mistakes :

    1) England should have fielded two different sides for Italy in Manaus and against Uruguay in Sao Paulo.

    The English players were too tired to compete successfully against Uruguay after their exhausting trip to Manaus only a few days earlier.

    The proof of this is shown by how badly top EPL teams perform at weekends after mid week European matches and by the fact that Italy today also performed badly today against Costa Rica.

    The team selected to play against Uruguay would not have made the Manaus trip except for the substitutes.

    2) England, knowing that Suarez was such an outstanding player, should have man marked him for the whole match. Perhaps even devoting two players to mark him.

    3) England should have “parked the bus” after equalising against Uruguay and settled for a draw.

    • A different Simon
      Posted June 21, 2014 at 3:22 pm | Permalink

      3) is what the Liverpool players should have done when they were one up at Crystal Palace – as Man City and Chelsea would have done .

      Given there were 5 Liverpool players in that England squad it seems they haven’t learned that lesson .

  50. petermartin2001
    Posted June 21, 2014 at 5:23 am | Permalink

    Maybe the Uruguayans haven’t built over their playing fields to the same extent as has happened in the UK?

    It is no longer possible to play football and cricket in the same places as I played as a young person. They have all been “redeveloped”. Then it was also still possible to play in the street. There’s too many cars now.

    Parents are more protective than they used to be. I’d roam far and wide at an early age in a way that wouldn’t be safe now. So present day children spend more time in their bedrooms playing football games on their computers which doesn’t make them any good at the real game!

    It probably happens in Uruguay too but to a lesser extent. I’d back British children at Wii football but Uruguayan children, and many other countries’ children too, at the real thing.

    The country’s sporting future is probably in rowing, track cycling and horse riding. British children, especially those from the right families, can access facilities which would not be available in Uruguayan children.

  51. Kmoore
    Posted June 21, 2014 at 2:31 pm | Permalink

    It’s a pity all the jeering and shouting of England supporters isn’t directed at the labour and conservative party’s that sold our birthright to be a sovereign country.just a symptom of slow national decline we can’t even run our own airports and power companies

  52. Bazman
    Posted June 21, 2014 at 3:40 pm | Permalink

    “We seem to have come on a football holiday by mistake. Are you the farmer?”
    “Stop saying that Roy, of course he’s the &*5^&”! farmer!”

  53. Robert Taggart
    Posted June 24, 2014 at 10:15 am | Permalink

    Methinks these little countries have nothing to lose – so they play to win !
    Furthermore, methinks the ‘chips on the shoulders’ of these lesser countries spurs them on – to play to win !!
    England ? – we be so much better a country in so many ways – we take it for granted we will win. Results should by now teach us a lesson – we be deficit to Uruguay (AFC) by two games…
    Played 11. Won 3. Drawn 3. Lost 5. You could not make it up !

  • About John Redwood

    John Redwood won a free place at Kent College, Canterbury, and graduated from Magdalen College Oxford. He is a Distinguished fellow of All Souls, Oxford. A businessman by background, he has set up an investment management business, was both executive and non executive chairman of a quoted industrial PLC, and chaired a manufacturing company with factories in Birmingham, Chicago, India and China. He is the MP for Wokingham, first elected in 1987.

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