Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

The Mood in the Camp May Be Fantastic but It Leaves Me Feeling Flat

Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

The Mood in the Camp May Be Fantastic but It Leaves Me Feeling Flat

Article excerpt

Byline: Barclay's account Patrick Barclay

IT'S been an ill-timed week for me: laid up after an ankle operation with no live football on the telly and confined to a house whose head (bless her) refuses to countenance such excellent substitutes as reruns of classic matches from the past.

Not that international weeks were ever much fun. The Football Association do their best by opening the doors to England's training headquarters now and again but interesting interviews are few and far between because the manager and players know it is a game of cat and mouse and they are the mice.

What the cats want is something that will stretch to a headline followed by a column item or two -- Roy Hodgson's expression of hope that John Terry would be found not to have erred, for example -- but managers and players are too well trained to emit many of these.

The players keep to a few well worn scripts about their duty to the fans after the most recent disappointment and how important it is to win even though it won't be easy because (fill in name of opponents) "have some good technical players". …

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