Does anyone read Caught Offside? Yeah, me neither. Still, when I came across this little nugget, which popped up on my NewsNow feed earlier today, I just couldn't overlook it.
Should Chelsea Pair Be Punished for their ‘Injury’ Inspired England Absence?
Questioning my commitment?
Really. This is what it has come to?
Not only are internationals being criticized when they do play for the country, they are being verbally assaulted when they do not. No wonder England continues to fail in light of massive expectations. How can any of these players feel an affection for the country they represent when those that occupy said country fail to support them?
I can't blame the likes of Paul Scholes and Alan Shearer for choosing to walk away early this madness. I'll even give Jamie Carragher some kudos - gross - though he eventually caved. Moving on to our boys.
Questioning John Terry's commitment to England is downright blasphemy. Attack his personal life all you want, but to say the man is not a soldier for the Three Lions? Nonsense. How many injuries has he played through during his career? How much has he contributed to the cause in spite of mediocre results? Exactly.
I think it was pretty clear to all who watched the Stroke City match that he was carrying an injury - no question. It has also been fairly clear that he's been dealing with some sort of a problem since the Premier League started, despite Terry putting in some excellent shifts. So he needed work on his hamstring, what's the big deal?
Lampard, meanwhile, was a shell of himself against Stoke. Case in point being his appallingly taken penalty. Caught Offside finds the timing of the problem - a hernia injury - perplexing. I don't care. If he's injured, let's get it fixed rather than prolonging a procedure and allowing the potential for further damage to grow. The Daily Star story, from which Caught Offside pulls its information, is even wrong in its factoid, stating that Lampard had surgery two weeks ago. How in the hell is that possible? He played against Stoke last weekend.
If I'm correct, I believe Frankie had surgery six days ago. King Carlo revealed in the Star article that Lampard will be fit for the game against West Ham in the coming week, heightening question marks about his absence for England. OK? Do you not remember The Mighty Drogba's hernia procedure? He was ready to go in no time. This surgery is minor these days.
"For sure, Frank will be fit for the West Ham game," Ancelotti is quoted as saying.
"No, we didn’t decide at the start of the season to do this now. After the Stoke game, Frank was in a lot of pain. So he decided, after talking to the club doctor, to resolve and remove the problem immediately."
Makes sense to me. Then again, I'm a Chelsea supporter and I'm blinded to the facts by an unmitigated bias, right? Whatever.
And even if one of Lampard and Terry wasn't as injured as led on - which is hardly a possibility - I don't seem to remember reading anything like this when Michael Carrick missed the Hungary friendly with an ankle injury, but then popped up in the Community Shield despite Manchester United - namely Sir Alex Ferguson - saying prior to the international that the midfielder would likely be out for a fortnight. Oh, but I guess that's only a friendly so it's cool to "manipulate" Capello and company. Whatever.
Conclusion: If you're going to criticize our players, at least add some substance to it. Or humor. Either way, you're missing, bro. Come on, you're better than that.