Tuesday, May 30, 2023

Take away the fear of playing for England and bring in the youngsters

Graham Fisher in Editorial, General Soccer News 29 Jun 2011


The old guard

I was fascinated to hear what Liverpool’s Jamie Carragher has had to say about playing for England. Speaking during a documentary on BBC radio last night Carragher was the first English player I have heard admit that there might be a problem.


He talked about the fact that players have a fear of failure when they pull on the famous old white shirt of the three lions.

“One mistake and you could be absolutely slaughtered. At your club, you know you will not be criticised as much and perhaps three days later there will be another game. With England, it could be months before you have another fixture. There is a fear at times when playing for England.”


The Liverpool defender went on to say that the intense media scrutiny that the players face has a serious effect on them.

“The intensity of the press does get to the players. Sometimes I think players would prefer the press guy to think they had played well, rather than the manager.”


It also seemed that Carragher had some criticism of the regime employed and enforced by Fabio Capello at last year’s World Cup. The thirty-three year old Carragher was brought back into the squad by Capello and featured in a couple of the group games at the tournament before being left on the bench later on.

“You stay in a hotel all day but you are at a World Cup for a long time and should be able to experience different things. I wouldn’t want players holed up. Take away the boredom, embrace the country we are in more. You never see anything.”


Tottenham manager Harry Redknapp also spoke of the complaints of some of the players who were at the World Cup.

“I spoke to a few players who said they were sat in their rooms waiting for the day to pass. Some said they were bored out of their brains.”


The Spurs boss also said what many of us have thought for some time, but I hadn’t heard anyone from football circles say it before.

“The rewards, the money that is involved in club football and the desire to play in the Champions League, it seems the international game is almost taking second stage. Players are loved by their clubs but not always when they play for their country.”


Following the World Cup, where Capello put a reliance on older players like Terry and Lampard, the manager kept his job. That may have been due to the astronomical cost of not keeping him rather than for any positive reasons, but he has shown some signs of following the lead of the Germans, who destroyed England at last season’s tournament, by introducing some younger players to the team.

Jack Wilshere, Andy Carroll and Adam Johnson are all beginning to forge a career at full international level.


Former German international and coach Franz Beckenbauer believes Capello should place much more trust in his younger players.

“I like Fabio but maybe he still holds on to older players. Maybe he should be brave and bring on more youngsters. England always has a lot of youngsters.”

That is what I truly hope the future holds. If England are going to fail in tournaments, which they have done for over forty years, wouldn’t it be better to do so with young players who might learn from the experience? You never know, they might even do better than the older ones.

Thank you

Thank you all for reading and I hope to write again for you at times in the future. Stay loyal to Soccernews and I’ll see you soon.



Graham Fisher



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David Nugent
11 years ago

Good luck for the future Graham.

11 years ago

Thanks for everything Graham, always enjoyed reading your articles. Good luck for the future

11 years ago

i cant agree more with you Graham. you’ve said it all

Chelsea FC Fan
Chelsea FC Fan
11 years ago

All the best Graham and many thanks for all your efforts…I’ve really enjoyed reading your articles and hope to hear more from you in the future.

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