So here we are-the weekend. The World Cup is a day closer and the build-up gathers pace. If your attitude is similar to mine, you were excited, optimistic perhaps that this could be our year. The Golden Generation are on the slide but new blood is seeping through. That was before Wednesday's game v Denmark.
You hope that the weekend will bring enjoyment, your club side might do the business, but there's nothing quite like national success. Yet the players, our England representatives, insist on dragging us to a slow, insufferable death. Wednesday was a wake up call. The words of the Denmark gaffer Morten Olsen ring around the national media, 'Good luck in the World Cup' he said, 'you'll need it'. It's hard to argue with his sentiment.
But where has the passion gone from English football? Where is that nervous excitement? That fear of penalties? That Rooney screamer? The slow tempo and general cluelessness of our national side in recent times has seemingly destroyed our passion and commitment. 'I'm not that bothered about England anymore' says the average bloke down the pub and who can blame him?
But can we buck the trend?
We are approaching a World Cup in Brazil, perhaps not the spiritual home of football but a land with a special connection nonetheless. From Pele to Ronaldo, the Brazilians have always inspired football. Shouldn't we be excited? Watching the video below I cannot help but jive along in anticipation of 'La jogo bonito' (The beautiful game) being rekindled in this magical land.
Samba Collection//Soundtrack Adidas™ [Buraka Som Sistema feat. Karol Conka — BOTA] (via Pako Ruíz)
*Stops dancing to the music whilst remembering the blinds are open and an audience is gathering* So can England perform in Brazil? As England fans we've been here before, a challenging qualification campaign running right to the end, an exciting build-up, the mates round for the opening game, so lets not spoil it! Whatever the outcome we want a team to be proud of, to restore the patriotic instinct in all of us and make us fall in love once again with the national side.
Can it be different this time? Roy's cautious tactics will do nothing to inspire confidence but we can only hope that the boys are prepared to do us proud. If chasing a winner results in a counter-attacking sucker-punch then so be it, surely all we can hope for are entertaining performances than remind us why we ride the agony and ecstasy that is football. We want tears from Gazza, Butcher's blood stained shirt and the spirit of '66. Come on Roy, passion and desire should be a prerequisite to pull on the jersey.
If this is what it takes then so be it.
Mike Bassett Half Time Team Talk (via heaves)
The law of averages surely dictates that a good World Cup for England is close. PLEASE let it be this one!
From beautiful football to bikinis on the beach this will be a World Cup to remember. We can only hope that England do us proud.