England's "heroes" about to come crashing back down to earth

10:28, June 23, 2010      

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Some analogies come to mind for England's impending defeat today against Slovenia. Crew onboard the Titanic spotting an enormous iceberg ahead in the north Atlantic on April 14, 1912. Or how about when you're cruising on the highway and see a collision ahead of you, dreading what you are abort to see? When we are presented with horror, we are transfixed.

On the World Cup menu today is something you won't want to miss, and not because it will dazzle you with courage, the spirit of unity or raw sporting talent.

England's superstars are about to come crashing down to earth, and it isn't going to be pretty.

These English millionaires are living a lifestyle only available to a tiny percentage of the world's population. Unfortunately, they have also been painted as superheroes and, sadly for them, they are about to be exposed in front of the whole world as mere mortals.

There is no antidote to kryptonite that England coach Fabio Capello can reach for. He is only able to rehearse in his own mind the apology he will have to make after the defeat, which, after Friday's perplexing and chronically inept effort in Cape Town, is so inevitable.

I don't have any reservations about being so pessimistic. I'm a true Engliand fan, but the miserable truth is this has been coming for a long time and it's better to swallow the pill than keep up this intolerable belief that all is well.

I have some solutions but I'll save them for the postmortem. Talking to fans in South Africa after the Algeria game was disheartening - authentic Englanders who feel utterly conned, mugged and betrayed.

Reading the British newspaper columnists these last two weeks has only made the suffering worse. Martin Samuel, James Lawton, Richard Williams and the rest - how wrong you have been to believe your poetic words have a modicum of positive influence on the team's performance.

This Hollywood England team is on the verge of being the first to crash out of a World Cup in the group stages since 1958. Delicious, irresistible calamity - bring it on.


Special Report: World Cup 2010


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