Mediawatch special: It’s England v ‘docile’ Germany

Editor F365
England F365
England Czech Republic

It’s England v Germany and it’s 2021, but most of the media are still way, way back in the past.


The front page of The Sun is predictably f***ing horrible…

…but the back page is little better, with this headline, complete with little pictures of all the devastated people from England’s pathetic history with Germany:

‘For Gazza. For Sir Bobby. For Psycho & Chrissy Waddle. For Frank. For El Tel. For the fans…FOR GARETH’

Oh do f*** off. And really, just do it for yourselves, fellas. You owe them nothing. You owe us nothing.


If you turn one page from that emotional blackmail-tinged nostalgia-fest, you literally run straight into Gareth Southgate saying all those things are an “irrelevance” to his players.

“Most weren’t born when a lot of those games happened. It’s an irrelevance for them, so I think we’re all looking forward to this game – a big opponent with excellent pedigree and great experience.”

When the manager himself says it’s an “irrelevance”, maybe don’t litter your back page with pictures of Bobby Robson, Paul Gascoigne and Chris Waddle.

Maybe instead – and this might blow a few minds – have an image of this England team who are playing a Germany team in 2021.


Remembrance of things past
But it truly does not seem to matter what Gareth Southgate says because football journalists are so obsessed with the past. How else do you explain the Daily Mirror telling us that ‘TWENTY FIVE years on, Gareth Southgate has the chance to lay to rest the demons which have haunted his career’ when the very same piece goes on to quote the man himself saying “I can’t win this game” and that what happened to him is “of no importance to these players”. He is flat-batting every question about the history of this fixture and yet all you talk about is the history of this fixture.

If England lose against Germany, the media should take a significant portion of the blame after spending a whole bloody week telling the players and manager that they always lose to Germany.


History lesson
‘The crunch clash is one of the oldest rivalries in football – dating back more than five decades’ – The Sun.

Pesky fact: England v Germany was first played in 1930.


Box of tricks
Stan Collymore has an ‘easy fix to Harry Kane’s England position which can get him firing against Germany’, because of course that is the priority for England now. Never mind that Raheem Sterling has been scoring goals and England have been keeping clean sheets, let’s get Kane ‘firing’.

‘I just hope Kane plays less of the Muller role of dropping off than he has so far this tournament.’

In this tournament and over the last three years. That’s how Harry Kane plays now and it really does not seem to have had a detrimental effect on the current Golden Boot holder.

‘When Muller does that, he has Gnabry ahead of him and often Robin Gosens and Joshua Kimmich as well.

‘But when Kane does it, it’s only Sterling and unless we see our full-backs or wing-backs, or Jack Grealish, Phil Foden and Bukayo Saka, bombing past him in a way that they haven’t so far then there will be times that Germany’s back three have a cigar on.’

To be fair, it is a whole week since England’s goal against the Czech Republic saw him exchanging passes with the advanced Grealish before he crossed for the advanced Sterling to score, so we can see how Stan might have forgotten.


Adventure is overrated
In the Daily Mail, Ian Ladyman (see Monday’s Mediawatch for more Ladyman) is saying that England’s ‘more adventurous side must come out’ against Germany. Are we ever sick of this bullsh*t? With the Netherlands and France out, and Italy and Spain suffering knock-out scares, we will take another 1-0 win, thanks.


Honour and obey
On the inside front pages of The Sun, we have Tony Parsons. How we wish he would stay there (and niche broadcaster GB News) and never again escape into mainstream TV. Highlights from his piece – amusingly headlined ‘Stuff Die Mannschaft right up the Wembley Way…just like in ’66’ – include:

  • ‘The English are not a docile people like the Germans.’
  • ‘It would be impossible to imagine, for example, the Germans ever voting to leave the European Union.’
  • ‘Even now, they are really good at obeying orders. It’s a bit different for the English. And our mood is sour.’

Mediawatch’s mood is sour. We have just read a piece ostensibly about a football match that did not mention a single footballer barring Bobby Moore, Bobby Charlton and Nobby Styles.

A football match is taking place on Tuesday. We would have bloody loved it if everybody could have just treated it like a football match.


Goodnight sweetheart
Over in the Daily Mail, it’s all about the WAGs of course. And this time the WAG tale is a positive one because these women are not famous women in their own right, these are wholesome, childhood sweetheart types (‘the sweetheart squad’) and that is intrinsically better.

‘After a fairly average performance in the group stage, the England squad probably haven’t been feeling the love these past weeks. But as they prepare to face Germany this afternoon, they do have one group of fans who support them through thick and thin — their WAGs.

‘For unlike previous England squads – such as the notorious 2006 World Cup crew, whose model-heavy contingent of wives and girlfriends included Victoria Beckham and Cheryl Cole – many of the current squad are their childhood sweethearts.

‘Led by captain HARRY KANE – married to his best friend from school – there are eight players either married to or in long-term relationships with women they started dating as teenagers.’

Well done, boys. Stay away from those model types with their ambitions. Let’s just brush over the fact that at least three members of the ‘sweetheart squad’ have seen their husbands and boyfriends cheat on them – and in one instance father a child – with model types. But the nice girls just turn a blind eye, exactly as they should.