EURO fever is now sweeping across the UK.
Well, probably more like a slight chill with all the injuries the team’s had – not helped by a small Belgian bloke shoving England defender Gary Cahill into giant colleague Joe Hart fracturing Cahill’s jaw. And that’s during a friendly.
The level of expectation doesn’t seem to be as high as usual and you can’t help but wonder what it would have been like if crafty cockney geezer Harry Redknapp had been in charge.
You get the feeling he’d have sorted the ‘big personalities’ out more than Roy Hodgson who comes across as an avuncular kind of bloke.
Those of us old enough to remember can’t help but notice the similarities between now and when Brian Clough was hotly touted as the England manager in 1977 but the FA went with the safe option in the form of kindly-faced Ron Greenwood.
Clough would have shaken the FA to the core.
Players who felt their England careers were safe would have been out and he’d have moulded a team, not a group of individuals.
The game needs more personalities. It’s all about money now. It was about sheer passion for the game then.
At least with Cloughie you’d have had pure entertainment. He once declared: "I wouldn’t say I was the best manager in the business but I was in the top one.’’
In terms of managing England to success it’s one of the game’s great might-have-beens. So in 2012 the England choice as manager shows that what goes around tends to come around.
But that’s football in every sense of the word for you.