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The apparent reason for England's shortcomings

Euro 2008 Failure Blamed On State Of Grass Roots Football Says Fans.

Euro 2008 has drawn to a close, with Spain crowned the new European champions, but a national survey of football fans conducted by NIVEA FOR MEN has revealed the reasons why English fans believe their national team continue to underachieve.

The survey saw a staggering 60% of respondents directly accuse the failure of any home nation to qualify for the finals on the state of grass roots football in the UK. 41% believe that the poor standard of coaching is to blame and 33% feel the lack of access to quality facilities at grass roots level are all the contributing to the continued failings of the national side.

NIVEA FOR MEN, a keen supporter of grass roots football is the official sponsor of Powerleague centres throughout the UK as well as amateur footballing fraternity Weekend Wonders, commissioned the survey to put pressure on the governing bodies in the UK and to invest sufficiently at grass roots level.

The influx of foreign players to the English game also came under fire from the fans, who believe it is having a knock on effect on the development of young players. 61% of fans blamed the number of foreigners in the Premier League for England's failure to reach Euro 2008.

With transfer rumours linking the likes of David Villa, Lucas Poldolski and Deco to follow players such as Luca Modric and Jose Bosingwa to the Premier League after Euro 2008 there are fears that this will further restrict the chances of young domestic talent coming through the ranks - and fans believe this will have a significant impact on England's international aspirations in the future with 63% believing there won't be sufficient numbers of young players making the grade for the World Cup in 2014.

But all hope is not lost - with 89% believing an improvement in grass roots facilities can help build a successful national team that can compete against Euro 2008's top teams widely accredited with investing in youth football. Of the nations that fans respect the most for the development of their players finalists Spain, tournament entertainers Holland and 2006 World Cup finalists France made up the top three.

Top Findings:

  • 25% of fans consider Spain to produce the games most exciting players.
  • 2 % of fans consider Germany to produce the games most exciting players.
  • 1% of fans consider Russia to produce the games most exciting players.
  • 60% see failure to qualify as an indictment of state of grass roots football.
  • 82% don't believe grass roots football is taken seriously enough.
  • 89% believe an improvement to grass roots facilities could build a successful national team.
  • 41% believe the poor quality of coaching at grass roots level led to Euro 2008 failure.
  • 61% believe number of foreign players in Premier League led to Euro 2008 failure.
  • 63% believe there aren't enough young players coming through to challenge in the future.
  • 68% of fans feel that our failure to qualify for Euro 2008 is down to the manager.


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  • The Journalist

    Writer: pompeyrug Mail feedback, articles or suggestions

    Date:Tuesday July 1 2008

    Time: 12:20AM

    Your Comments (oldest first)

    Change to most recent first
    Tosh... For the euro qualification we had a squad of top class players.. The problem was egos and poor management. NIVEA for emn.. whatever next..hair dye ?
    Report Abuse
    01/07/2008 08:11:00

    Let's always find someone or something to blame other than the bleedin' obvious. Not picking David James is what cost England. We conceded stupid goals that were mainly down to the keepers.
    Report Abuse
    01/07/2008 09:16:00

    What a load of balls! There is plenty of English talent coming through, the problem is that most of the players are not good enough and end up in the Fizzy pop leagues. It is the money that ruins our chances as much as anything. Increased money brings in foreign managers who buy players from abroad as they believe them to be that much better. The likes of West Ham, Man Utd, Leeds and Southampton have turned out enough decent English players to form the England team between them! We must face facts. The players and coach were below standard and thought they would cruise into the Euro's. Wrong!
    Report Abuse
    01/07/2008 09:31:00

    'Nivea For Men' in soon to be replacing Lawrenson on MOTD shocker!' It's a combination of Top Clubs shopping for top worldwide talent (quick fix rather than long term investment), bad coaching and team selection at international level, and the fact that many of the England team believe we're better than we are and remain complacent for most games.
    Report Abuse
    01/07/2008 09:56:00

    not bein funny guys but i think Capello has shown tht we actually have a very good squad of players all playin in the Prem leaugue and tht wen players r actually picked on merit and nt the size of their wages or on their 'name' then actually England could b a very good team indeed but there u go and actually this also backs up storagematts coment bout James he should have bein picked because he is the best England Goal keeper even if he wasn't the biggest name at the time!
    Report Abuse
    01/07/2008 11:26:00

    What a load of bollox. We were just *****e when it really mattered and that's the beginning and end of it. Capello may be the one to engender a team ethic regardless of which club a player is with. I'd not be surprised were he to pick decent English players from the Championship if needs be.
    Report Abuse
    01/07/2008 14:28:00

    pick me up im 14 and play footie had trials 4 oxford and turned them down
    stfc ballboy
    Report Abuse
    01/07/2008 18:16:00

    Yeh utter rubbish. We have the players but cannot mould them into the national team we all desire. Management, coaching whatever but not grassroots.
    Report Abuse
    01/07/2008 20:21:00

    There was one reason, and one reason only we didn't qualify. And he was last seen looking stupid under a big brolley.
    Report Abuse
    01/07/2008 20:55:00

    spineless steve didnt help matters with his selection policy, or lack of it, but too many of the players also cruised around too much thinking it was easy and they had a god given right to quality.
    Report Abuse
    01/07/2008 23:45:00

    hahaha - so true tracy! It all came down to two Pompey players at the end of the day. Kranky with his comedy goal, and Jamo who should have been between the sticks....doubt if Kranky would've even tried that with Jamo in goal. Still, it was a bloody great tournament without us anyway!
    Report Abuse
    03/07/2008 08:37:00

    Agree with Chix. It's all about the unjustified inflated egos. Remedy: 1) No WAGS at or around games. 2) Drop anyone who shows the least degree of selfishness, (even if they're the second coming of Pele, which isn't likely to happen in an England shirt). 3) Manager to slag off players who aren't giving 100%. 4) If you pull a Rooney and act out despite the cost to the team, you don't get to play in an England shirt for at least 10 games. 5) Stop automatically picking from the big 4 clubs. It's all very well blaming it on Spineless Steve, but England has produced dysfunctional teams which did not play up to their potential for many eons before he arrived. It's simple really. Those who work hard and impress during practice get to play on game day. Full stop.
    Report Abuse
    04/07/2008 01:25:00

    Sorry to rant, but this is a subject that winds me up like a top. I'd rather have a national team full of conference leaguers who get spanked but give 110% than a bunch of overpaid, ego inflated primadonnas who get beat 1-0 or scrape a tie when they've got the potential to do so much more but not enough pride to go down fighting. It's a privilege to be asked to serve your country (pay attention Paul Scholes) and when you're on the pitch you should act as if it's your last dance, not lolligag and fish for excuses afterward. I hope if nothing else, Capello teaches them this because as a bunch ( and with a couple of exceptions ) it's the players who are the national disgrace to the country who invented the game, not the bungling toffs who run the FA or their kiss ass minions like McClaren (who never actually get to kick the ball). There are Englishmen in all 4 leagues and elsewhere who would sell their souls for a chance to put on the shirt, let alone get paid for it. Play those guys. The FA owes no debt to the EPL and the EPL has not done them any favours. Phew, Glad I got that off my chest. Good night all.
    Report Abuse
    04/07/2008 01:55:00


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