Pub Football

Pub Football

Another View

The recent England football internationals gave me another excuse, as if one were needed, to head down to the local pub for an afternoon of beer and shouting at the television.  There was a noticable lack of interest in the match against Israel as proved by the usual masses of fans, draped in St George’s Crosses and replica kits, being largely absent (“part-time supporters”, what would you do with ’em, eh?).  Despite that, the on pitch performance was pretty good.  Steve McLaren stumbled across what appeared to be a cohesive team.  Forced to drop Lampard, Beckham, Rooney, Crouch and Hargreaves all of whom would have started if SM had had his way, we saw Wright Phillips, Barrie, Gerrard (in position), Owen and the much derided Heskey gel together to give the home nation a 3-0 win.  It’s a shame this was all by accident rather than design but it still proved successfull enough for the head honcho to name an unprecidented unchanged side against Russia on Wednesday.  Gus Hidink’s side proved tougher opponents but the result was the same as Owen broke the 40 barrier with his international collection of goals.  It will now prove to be a tough decision for McLaren to make to see who gets the nod for the next game in October… keep your superstars on the bench or commit the cardinal sin of management and change a winning formula.  The biggest test of his management is, I feel, yet to come.
The difference, from a purely personal perspective, was that I watched the Russia game at home (because of the 5am start I had in prospect on Thursday morning).  I got to hear Motson and Lawrenson’s commentary although that is not necessarily a good thing but really there was a definate lack of atmosphere and I missed having people to chew over the match with.  The whole thing got me thinking as to why people don’t go to the pub to watch things other than sport.  Should I head out to a local establishment and try and find somewhere to watch the new series of the Sarah Jane Adventures next Monday?  I thought not, but I’m not quite sure why.  Any ideas?

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