There are always going to be winners and losers when there’s a major tournament involved. This week’s out-and-out winners, qualifying for next year’s World Cup in Brazil, are the Colombia who overturned a 3-0 deficit against a crestfallen Chile team.
If you take a look at football fans in England this week, you’ll probably see a bunch of glum faces as they realise the grey cloud of international breaks looms over with only miserable national team performances ahead. Nobody really cares anymore. It’s sad how we’ve reached this sorry state of affairs, especially when our country boasts one of the most competitive leagues in the world, so how is it that we’ve become the big underachievers of the football?
These days you’ll probably find A.C. Milan lingering somewhere in the bottom half of Serie A level on points with Livorno whose highest league table finish was back in 1943. They’ll probably be getting beat by Verona, perhaps because their defence can’t cope with a thirty-six year old striker from once upon a time ago. Kakà is definitely injured and Balotelli is missing penalties. What happened to a football club that was once one of the most feared teams in Europe?
Good heavens, Manchester United fans are smiling once more and it’s not because David Moyes has been sacked. Instead it took two well-taken goals from the Belgian-born, Albanian, Kosovan, definitely-not-English Adnan Januzaj for them to get excited again in the kind of way that brought adoration to Cristiano Ronaldo’s curly bangs and stepovers.
There are a lot of things you can buy for £85.3 million; you could own a Bayern Munich starting XI that humiliated Man City in midweek for example. You might even want to splash out on PSG’s Edison Cavani and Marquinhos if you fancied buying over-priced South Americans for both your defence and attack. Imagine two Mesut Özils in your team.
Every weekend you see shuttlers tirelessly covering ground on the pitch as they link attack and defence as part of their midfield diamond.
The kind of role highlighted by great athletes such as Arturo Vidal and Claudio Marchisio of Juventus who regularly encompass immense determination and fuel to drive their team to victory. The Shuttler pays homeage to these unsung stories by providing short bites (not the Luis Suarez kind) of opinions to those who love the beautiful world of football. And, indeed, it is beautiful— especially if you avoid the scandal du jours and mindless rumours that usually involve insanely rich sports professionals, even richer club owners, and Wayne Rooney. We don’t do that. We just poke fun at those who deserve it and celebrate those who’ve earned it.