Club v Country debate – does there need to be one?

Thomas Rooney tries to answer the age old question.

Every time an international break comes around, we get the same comments from football fans across the country. They mainly involve how desperate England games tend to be, how boring the weekend is and how nobody really cares about how England get on.

For many parts, this is true. There is no way a weekend of international friendlies is as exciting as a Premier League weekend. That’s just a fact and accepted across English football.

However, why do we have to insist on devaluing England so much? Yes, your club is more important, that’s a given. Why all the fuss about how little people care about England

This is just one of the things that frustrate me about modern football fans. Nobody is going to question your passion for your club if you want England to win. You are allowed to enjoy England matches and support the team.

Perhaps it has something to do with the players. In fact, it almost certainly does. The likes of John Terry, Ashley Cole and even Wayne Rooney haven’t exactly endeared themselves to the general public have they?

Equally, Premier League football has become so competitive that it might be difficult for a Manchester City fan to cheer on Rooney for example? Or a Tottenham fan to encourage Theo Walcott?

It’s a strange situation because football is supposed to unite people in a positive way, but as far as England are concerned, this doesn’t seem to be happening right now.

It might have something to do with the club you support. I’m a passionate Norwich City fan, so does the face that no Norwich players are involved with England cloud my judgement? Do I see them as a separate team that I support?

Because to be honest, it is extremely frustrating when people don’t get behind England and I’m interested to see whether it is just the minority that feel the need to devalue every single England game or a general feeling around the country?

The thing is, your club team puts in a poor performance, but wins the game. You are happy enough and pleased that three points have been recorded. For England, it seems as though – unless it’s a storming win and a thrilling performance – nothing is every good enough.

Take the win over Spain for example. We had just beaten the WORLD CHAMPIONS and people were still going on and on about Spain’s passing and England’s negative approach. ENGLAND WON THE GAME.

It may well change when it comes to Euro 2012. With no other football going on, it could capture a larger percentage of football fans again.

Overall, I’m aware that this could be a case of me making something out of nothing, but I am really keen to find out your thoughts on England. Why are people so insistent on making it known that they don’t care? Is it influenced by which club you support? Will it change for Euro 2012?

I’m off to play some texas hold ’em, but please do let me know your thoughts.


  1. Good Day Sir,

    My thought (and I’m American so I don’t have a dog in that game) is that England may have won but they won while still sucking. Winning a friendly while sucking is not likely to endear a team to its fans.

    My perspective may be off because admittedly when I am playing I want to win at all costs regardless of appearances, when I am watching I’d rather see a team lose pretty than win ugly. Hence a fondness for pre-2008 Spain and post-2004 Arsenal, and a dislike for Jose Mourinho and Rafa Benitez (good god, that Valencia team were ugly, no?)

  2. I’d say it has something to do with the amount of foreign players in Premier League teams, people care more for Aguero, Torres, Suarez etc than what they do for their English team mates. I’d also go out on a limb to say the England team don’t really ever seem to have their hearts in the game anymore (just my opinion)

  3. I find it appalling how people never back England then they complain how crap we are! I’m pretty sure foreigners choose country over club anyday and it should be the same here! I’m an Arsenal fan and would rather see England win the Euros/World cup over Arsenal winning the premierleague mainly because England winning a major tournament is a rare thing, almost once in a lifetime, whereas Arsenal will have plenty more chances for trophys.

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