For so long we’ve been told the likes of Rooney, Gerrard, Lampard, Terry and Cole are the “Golden Age” of British football and the best we’ve seen since the World Cup winning squad of 1966. But yet again England exited a tournament as losers and their fans dream of world success has turned into another nightmare. And in a European country just around the corner, a team of patriotic men were lauded similarly to this generation of English players. From the media to fans, everyone agreed Spain was something special. And like England, so much pressure was put on the Spanish. Even prior to Euro 2008, the expectations were high. But they didn’t cave. They won it. And the expectations for England and Spain were vast again in World Cup 2010. England were as miserable as their winter weather and Espana went on to win the whole damn thing.
In the case of Spain, their team of individual superstars actually have world-class talent and this time around they didn’t cave to pressure. Their team of individual superstars came together and played for each other. They proved that despite the hype and expectations, they could win. They deserved to win the World Cup. The right team won the World Cup. And with the likes of Xavi, Iniesta, Casillas, Ramos, Villa, Torres and Fabregas, they could go on to win for many years to come.
In the past, Spain too have been guilty of failing themselves and their country. Whether it was the European Championships or the World Cup, they would always choke. Even in the days of the great Raul, the Spanish could never deliver the big prize. But somewhere along the way they bought some belief, a little swagger and a side of balls. They became a team of destiny. They became World Champions.
England should examine how Spain have achieved their success over the last four years. They should look to their European counterparts as an example of how you can go from being a total loser to a total winner. And perhaps they should consider having an Englishman manage their way back to the glory days. You can’t help but think the spirit of the Spanish side and the influence of their coach Vicente del Bosque just instilled more patriotic pride to their cause.
There’s nothing much else to say about the World Cup other than I feel the same way about it as I did a few weeks ago. We saw some great goals here and there with Giovanni Van Bronckhorst’s of Holland being the best for me. There were a few nail-biting moments and in my opinion the most exciting of all was the late goal by the USA against Slovenia . The biggest stars in the world including Messi, Ronaldo, Kaka and Rooney didn’t shine at all, which was a huge disappointment. Unfortunately the tournament was dampened by awful refereeing decisions and the final didn’t live up to its billing. Plus it felt way too cold for a World Cup. Overall the sizzle was certainly missing!
A few things are for sure after this tournament…here we go…Spain are truly the best footballing team in the universe. They will be considered one of the best-ever having won Euro 2008 and World Cup 2010. Everyone around the world will now know who Xavi and Iniesta are and who will deny these two sublime players their place as the world’s best midfield duo? Not me. David Villa has absolutely nailed the label of world’s best striker and how happy are Barcelona they bought him before the tournament? Manchester United must be feeling sick having let Pique go back to Barcelona. Referees from Mali suck. Rooney is a baby. Forlan has still got it. Muller is the next big thing. Sneijder is magic. Goal-line technology is a must. And coach Bosque will forever be worshipped for delivering the goods to his fellow countrymen.
This certainly is the “Golden Age” of Spanish football and you truly deserve the label Spain. Hope you are taking notes England…