Writer: J P Fear
Date:Saturday November 18 2006
Martin O'Neill is so switched on it is untrue, he has said that the fans are less patient and more critical of players these days because the players are so well paid and prized as stars that the fans can no longer relate to them.
I personally think he has hit the nail on the head with that.
He said: 'With the amount of money flying around in the game and what it costs to get into a game, fans are saying 'I'm paying £45 for a ticket, I'm entitled to be entertained and I'm entitled for my team to be doing better. We will never get back to the days where Stanley Matthews and Tom Finney travelled on the same bus as supporters to a game - but we may have gone too far in the other direction.'
'I think the alienation of player to the crowd is greater than it has ever been and that's a bit sad. I would like that closer relationship to come back, even if it meant people getting in cheaper, to bring it back to reality.'
Blinding comments as far as I can see. The last player most working class fans could relate to is probably Ian Taylor who did it the hard way and used to drive a fork lift truck. The modern players - through no fault of their own AND I'd do the same given their opportunities - are more pampered, they are out of school, into academies, look after at the clubs and then once they make it (and lets not downplay how much stress and how cut through the sport is for those trying to make it) they are looked after for life with just a few years earnings. How can we relate to players who make more in a week or two than we make in a year?
So when we see them strolling around like they don't care, you can't help but think of the diamond earrings they buy that are worth more than our houses and the cars they drive that would pay our way for a decade!!!
Date:Saturday November 18 2006
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