The English press has been in hog heaven with a hapless England team to eviscerate, a gormless John Terry standing up for honest speaking (honesty being his most famous trait) and Wayne Rooney having the gall to complain about the fans when he should have been lashing himself with sharpened twigs.
They also get to repeat, ad nauseum, "at least we're not France". You see whatever ructions there have been in the England camp we haven't had people sent home and a player revolt that left leading players on the benches - a hoo ha that is widely seen as leading to their dismal performance that, as of today, ensures they couldn't clear the group stage.
However, it's the racism of the thing that should interest us. The complaints have mounted that the French squad, and in particular the black players, are not patriotic enough and do not represent France. They don't even sing the national anthem at the start of the game. This led to one poll yesterday saying that 75% of French people hoped that the squad did *not* win today's crucial game.
Well, I guess there'll be dancing in the streets of Paris tonight then. Now for the round-up;
- The Mail has an odd story implicating Rooney and Terry in the killing of kangaroo babies.
- I'm a great fan of David Zirin, the American sports journalist, who has responded to Terry Eagleton's remarks that if we are to gain any social progress we'll have to abolish football.
- Sunder Katwala claims the left is winning the cup.
- Kasama says that the World Cup draws out the difference between the South Africa that could have been and the South Africa that is.
- John Foster says that the USA has finally learned to embrace and despise football.
- Charlotte Gore looks at the players' pay and motivations.
- Derek Wall says that the media have censored the protest of Argentinian players.