The quality of football at this year’s European Championships is expected to be far lower than the previous championships held in Austria and Switzerland four years ago, claims a UEFA official.
The inclusion of the United Kingdom’s ‘England’ side, which didn’t qualify for the previous tournament, is expected to decrease the quality of the championships by over 22%. The 2012 tournament is due to get under way early next month in Poland and the Ukraine but the fear of a downsize of talent on offer is known to be worrying officials.
“We have tried everything to make sure we offer fans around Europe the best sporting spectacle this year” said UEFA Junior Vice-President Jean D’Anjou, “However, due to the rules of the game, we were unable to influence the England manager’s decision to bring footballers such as John Terry, Stuart Downing and Andy Carroll to the championships” he added.
It’s widely expected that the inclusion of the English team will see route one football introduced again into the championships as well as Glen Johnson being considered an international footballer despite the obvious lack of sporting talent.
Away from the pitch, Polish and Ukrainian officials have brought in extra officers to deal with the potential hooliganism aspect of the English game. Teams of policemen and women have been given permission for the use of water cannons during the championships but this decision has seen some criticism.
England supporters club spokesman David Smith came to the defence of the English supporters who will be making the trip to Eastern Europe: “It’s widely known that only a large majority of our supporters are racist and likely to cause a problem. I find it extremely offensive that UEFA officials see us as a threat to the championships, especially as over 80 of our supports club will be serving prison sentences throughout the matches. I blame the immigrants.”
Despite the fears put forward by the host countries, many have quickly moved to ease their fears by explaining that the English team are very unlikely to play more than three games during the tournament.