Jude Bellingham hit with ‘FIVE-FIGURE’ fine as ‘hipsters’ derided for England regrets

Editor F365
England star Jude Bellingham and his balls
England star Jude Bellingham and his balls

Jude Bellingham has ESCAPED a ban! Who saw that coming? Plus, a massive straw hipster man is knocked down on England and Austria…

 

Bell ends
After pretending all week that Jude Bellingham will be banned for his ‘I’ve got massive bollocks, me’ gesture, the truth has finally emerged…

FIVE FIGURES? FIVE whole FIGURES? But that’s more than £9,999!

According to MailOnline:

Jude Bellingham is ‘set for a five-figure fine’ but will ESCAPE a ban after X-rated gesture following his spectacular goal in England’s dramatic win against Slovakia

Phew. Whoever would have thought that Bellingham would ESCAPE a ban for something for which a ban had no precedent. Oh, us. That’s who.

 

Shooting from the hipster
If there’s a straw man to be found, there is nobody better at lighting a match and throwing on fuel than The Times’ Martin Samuel. The straw man never stood a chance.

Hipster’s choice have gone home. Still wish we were in Austria’s shoes?

Did anybody ‘wish’ they were in Austria’s shoes? A quick Google search for ‘wish Austria’s shoes’ brings up 1) Samuel’s column, 2) a tweet from The Times promoting Samuel’s column and 3) New High-cut Full Diamond Men’s Shoes Flame Purple Rhinestones Austrian Diamond Red Shoes Lovers Shoes on Wish.

What certain people (or ‘hipsters’ if you are a late-middle-aged man) said was that Austria were really quite surprisingly good – particularly in their win over the Netherlands – and England had been less good. Hard to argue with that unless you are a contrary f***er.

Also, surely there’s more than one hipster.

Oh, Austria. So different to England in every way. Quicker, smarter, better organised, more exciting to watch. And, of course, now home.

Oh, Martin. It was okay to admire Austria and be disappointed in England. Does that make us a ‘hipster’? We do like those CBD Kombucha drinks.

It’s so sodding lazy. And it’s so predictably 2024. You’ll be astonished to learn that Samuel then tells us how better things were in The Past.

That’s the problem with tournament football. It’s like movies used to be before every ending and storyline was played out to a test audience, to see what anodyne outcome was preferred. Now, the guy always gets the girl; good triumphs over evil. Tournament football isn’t like that. Good things happen to bad people; bad things happen to good people. It’s like Chinatown. Undeserving England go through; scampering, delightful Austria, go out. The police chief puts an arm around a defeated hipster’s shoulder. “Forget it, Jake,” he says. “It’s Chinatown.”

Does somebody want to tell him the latest Best Picture Oscar winner was Oppenheimer? Mediawatch doesn’t want to spoil the ending but…

It’s almost like Samuel is exactly like your dad, who says ‘there’s nowt on at the pictures’ (everybody’s dad is from Yorkshire, right?), but what he means is that he’s not being tricked into going to see a Brokeback Mountain again.

Look, nobody’s laughing. The way England have played so far isn’t amusing any of us. Yet when Gareth Southgate references previous campaigns, such as the World Cup in 1990 or Euro ’96, now being viewed through rose-tinted optics, he does so with a firmer grip on reality that those who appear to be confusing the present England team with Brazil in 1970.

Is this a different straw man? Because the ‘hipsters’ enjoying Austria are not the same as the imaginary souls claiming that England should be playing like Brazil in 1970. Most of us would just rather England did not play like England in 1970.

Would Switzerland find room for Harry Kane? Yes. Jude Bellingham? Yes. Phil Foden, Bukayo Saka and Declan Rice? Yes, yes and yes. The reason England arrived here on such a wave of optimism was that, for all the flaws mentioned, on paper this is a very good team.

It really is. And yet it’s been sh*t. Which is why we have been admiring Switzerland and admiring Austria: They have been considerably more than the sum of their parts and England have been considerably less.

Yet we’ve all been wishing we were more like Austria – Austria, who are at home, while England are not.

Jesus. Even a nine-year-old knows that a team ranked 25th in the world have different expectations than one ranked fifth. This is like arguing that Manchester United had a better season than Bournemouth because they finished higher in the table. Still wish you were in the Cherries’ shoes, United fans?

There is Cadbury’s confectionery in yellow wrappers, much loved by young women taking a bath in soft focus, that isn’t quite as flakey as Holland in this tournament – yet here they are.

To be fair to Samuel, he has come right up to date with a reference from 1992 there.

“”It is difficult to explain why sometimes you play badly and, the next game, you are really sharp from the beginning,” their manager, Ronald Koeman, said after Romania were mercilessly swept aside. And that is Koeman, a veteran of 1,536 games as player and manager, of which 97 were in senior international football.

The key words there are ‘really sharp from the beginning’ and ‘mercilessly swept aside’, Martin. England have not played well for 90 minutes since October.

Samuel then goes on to say that this is a tight tournament (true) and that most European teams – even the supposed minnows – know how to keep it tight. He’s right in some respects but to claim that no team has worked out how to score goals is clearly nonsense.

‘Even Spain’s last-16 meeting with Georgia began with the underdogs taking an early lead’ is conspicuous by its failure to mention the final 4-1 scoreline.

Pesky facts:

Of the eight teams remaining at Euro 2024, England are seventh when ranked on goals scored.
Of the eight teams remaining at Euro 2024, England are seventh when ranked on xG.
Of the eight teams remaining at Euro 2024, England are eighth when ranked on shots attempted.

It’s not unreasonable to want more, Martin. And it’s got f*** all to do with Austria or hipsters.

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