I don't know how many of you know him but today I read an article by a footballer, Rohan Ricketts. He currently plays in Moldova for FC Dacia Chişinău after a career at varying levels in England. Rohan also writes regularly for a few Internet publications.
But it was the article he wrote today that caught my eye, it was in Sabotage Times.
He discusses what footballers really think about us fans. Don't get me wrong, he makes some reasonably good points.
"Players have a right to leave a club. After all, there are plenty of situations when the clubs screw the players. Sometimes you’ll have a player who wants to stay but he’ll get kicked out."
There are times when we have seen players encouraged to move on because they don't get on with the manager or they don't fit into his plans. Players who have been loyal to the club, signed long term contracts and kissed the badge. I'm sure there are but excuse me if I can't name any.
Now, don't get me wrong. I DO NOT condone threatening anyone with physical violence and the 'idiots' that turned up outside Rooney's house clearly need to get a grip. Invading someone's privacy is not right and crossing a line. The problem is some players have removed that line for us, so of course less thoughtful fans can become confused.
Let me ask you a few questions:
*What are the names of Paul Scholes' children?
*Where did Ryan Giggs get married?
*How many children does Shay Given have?
Do you know? Because I don't. And I don't know because they haven't made money by telling me through exclusives 'celebrity' magazines. They have chosen to keep their personal lives private, to raise their children away from the glare of flashlights and VIP events. They realised early on that their job was simply to play football.
If you choose to air your clean laundry in a public arena then of course there is going to be a heightened interest when it's dirty. It's basic human curiosity and when that 'dirt' is down to your own lack of morals, excuse me if I don't feel sorry for you. If you are man enough to make that mistake, then surely you have to be man enough to deal with the consequences. To be honest, most people don't care but we've been force fed so many details about their life, people feel as if they know them, which leads to people thinking they have the right to judge. Even if they don't.
Whether or not they will like to admit it, certain players readily invited the media into their homes. And like a vampire; once you invite them in, it is very hard to kick them out.