Tuesday, February 26, 2008


Paul Davis and Martin Taylor

Sickening. Scandalous. Unbelievable. Disgusting.

These are some of the reactions that came out of the Birmingham v Arsenal game on Saturday but, unbelievably, these words aren't being used to describe Taylor's kung fu attack on Eduardo. Rather they are being used to slag off Arsene Wenger and William Gallas for their reactions to having seen one of their team mates given a one way ticket to hospital.

Forgive me here but I recall it was Eduardo on the receiving end of that horrific challenge? It was Taylor who went over the top? So why attack Arsenal? Why give gimps like Kelly, Bruce and McLeish the time of the day as they line up to protect one of their own? Why are we hearing Birmingham players moaning saying Arsenal are sore losers (hands up who likes to lose?) and they moaned the whole game? Who is the victim here?

'Cos that's what football is today. Wall to wall coverage of ex players and players keeping things in house and matey. Taylor is of course a lovely bloke who helps old ladies cross streets. He gives smarties to kids who go trick or treating and he always wears a red nose on red nose day. Top bloke, salt of the earth, know wot I mean fella? Weren't his fault Eduardo is too quick...serves him right, wasn't even a yellow card.

The bods who run football are so far removed from even the anti sepctic reality of the game today they verge on being farcical. Pundits never see any wrong in anything an English player do so would stop them playing golf together in the future or see free tickets dry up. The powers that be are just to busy trying to screw every penny they can out of the game; how long before we can buy Eduardo plastercasts?

Taylor is likely to get a three match ban for a straight red. Joey Barton is looking at bird for assault in McDonalds but do it on the pitch and hey, no problem, your mates will circle their wagons and protect you. Omerta will descend on the game as everyone rushes to look after their own.

20 years ago Paul Davis lamped Glenn Cockerill at Highbury. Mild mannered Paul eh? He'd never do a thing like that but he did and he got a nine match ban. Cockerill was soon back playing while sticking to a diet of soup through a straw and Davis was villified. Interestingly little was made of why Davis reacted so, what the provocation was but that's another story.

Cantona was suspended for months after attacking a Crystal Palace fan but then Cantona was French. Davis was Arsenal and he was, still is, black. What about Taylor? He is that rarity, an English footballer, obviously one of limited ability. Will he get anything beyond three matches? Or perhaps Wenger and Gallas will get banned and fined for bringing the game into disrepute 'cos they're Frenchies and Taylor? It was just an unfortunate accident...

But one wonders what the reaction would be had it been Rooney on the receiving end of a Senderos or Eboue challenge?

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