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Tuesday, 22 June 2010

Terry Putsches Above His Weight

It’s unclear whether or not John Terry has ever read The God Delusion by Richard Dawkins, but if he were to, perhaps he could superimpose the concept of himself as Our Glorious Leader over the notion of a supernatural creator and realise he is in fact a delusion himself and not in fact the saviour of English football. Please listen to me John: you are NOT England captain anymore.

Let me recap. England’s Brave John Terry turns up to a press conference with something clearly on his mind, betrayed by the beads of sweat trickling down his forehead. As if his life depended on it, Terry then blurts out that all is far from well in the camp. That Fabio Capello is so bloody-mindedly sticking to a flawed formula that England’s place in the World Cup is in severe jeopardy. Publicly calling for Joe Cole’s inclusion and stressing that if his words upset the manager, ”so what”, Terry went further, by some considerable margin, than any English player has ever gone in criticising life under Capello. Something had clearly come to a head for the FORMER England captain. Shame he couldn’t have used his before voicing his dismay in the media before even going to his manager’s door.

Quite what prompted Terry to go public with his concerns, only he knows. If it was an exercise in appeasing a disaffected public in the wake of the abysmal stalemate with Algeria, it was at best ill-conceived and at worst sheer bloody stupid. He has gone into the press room juggling apples and ended up with onions all over his face. To Terry apologists, once again, the bravest man to come out of England since Terry Butcher has once more bounded into the breach, dear friends. He shall never surrender.

Well, someone needs to remind him that he is not captain anymore. That he doesn’t speak for the players. His vanity has been his downfall in that he has spectacularly misjudged the level of support he has in the dressing room – only long-suffering mate Frank Lampard offered any sympathy and even then it was distanced. And first and foremost, someone needs to remind him that you don’t go running to the media to criticise your manager. Not when your manager is Fabio Capello anyway.

Capello, for his part, has played the whole situation as expertly as one would expect. He has isolated the ringleader and treated him for the entire world to see as a petulant little schoolboy who has made a “big mistake”. Capello asserted: “The mistake is you have to speak with the players, with me, with the dressing room.” And so, what could feasibly have been a minor revolt passed off as a non-event triggered by the passion, yes, but also the vanity of one man. As far as rebellions go it was less blood and thunder and more mouse fart. The Italian left no one under any illusions who is boss, as was the only way he could have successfully dealt with Terry’s display of dissent. You are not in Cobham now, John.

Terry has form with this ‘heart on sleeve’ bollocks as we all well know. Hearsay this may be, though I doubt it, JT also fell out with the best manager in the worldTM, Jose Mourinho, up until then his loyal right-hand man, back in 2007. When Mourinho sought to discover if there was a physical reason for Terry’s sub-standard performances, the brave one was furious. He has always been able to dish out criticism but has rarely been able to take it. This much is true when he, not in so many words, says that Emile Heskey is crap (by calling for Cole’s inclusion). Yet, if memory serves, was it not JT’s wretchedly lazy backpass that meant we almost lost to Algeria on Friday night? If he was indispensible to England, I could just about stomach his outburst. But he isn’t. Perhaps more so now with injuries to Rio Ferdinand and Ledley King, alongside the suspension of Jamie Carragher, but certainly through lack of viable options rather than his own form. Capello has laid down the gauntlet, JT needs to rid himself of this ludicrous God complex and pick it up. Adam Bushby

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