Xenophobic English football fans

Xenophobic English football fans


So it has to be Harry Redknapp for England, does it? That’s the consensus among football fans, many of whom have written off Fabio Capello’s “disastrous reign” as manager of the national team.

It’s not just the fans either. One distinguished ex-player said last Thursday, without a hint of irony, that hiring foreign managers “hasn’t worked”.

What planet are these fans and players living on? Since 1990 England’s football team has had a terrible record, entering ten major tournaments and only reaching the quarter finals or better on four occasions. However, three of those occasions were under Sven Goran Eriksson (a dreaded foreigner), and the other – with home advantage – was under Terry Venables in 1996.

Twice, England were so desperately bad that they didn’t even qualify for the tournament finals – under Graham Taylor in 1994 and Steve McLaren in 2008 (both English).

Capello’s record of reaching the second round of the 2010 World Cup finals matches the achievement of Glen Hoddle 12 years earlier, and is better than the records of the hopeless Kevin Keegan, who couldn’t get England beyond the group stage of the European Championship in 2000, and of Graham Taylor (again) in 1992.

And what about the overall win-loss record of these disastrous foreigners? Capello has the best record of any England manager in history, with a win ratio of 67%. Hoddle and Alf Ramsey come joint second with 61% and Eriksson joint fourth on 60%. Trailing in their wake is a list of Englishmen, including the most recent managers: McLaren and Venables (both 50%), Taylor (47%) and Keegan (a humiliating 39%).

So on what grounds are these foreign managers so useless? The answer, I regret to say, is that they aren’t useless at all. Just foreign. And to many who follow English football, that appears unacceptable. How sad.

Article date

February 13th, 2012

Robert Taylor

Media Trainer


My main passion is media training, and I’m proud to be one of the UK’s most experienced and successful trainers in this field.

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