When Did ‘Expert Summarizers’ Become Biased Pundits?

The BBC used be to known the world over for their balanced reporting, which I always took to mean that they told both sides to every story, and you could then decide your own opinion based on fact.

I also thought football commentary/punditry was the same, you could listen to a game on the radio and get a very good idea of who was playing well or badly, and form a judgment you could use in the Pub as a basis for argument.

However these days we have the resident experts who are ex-players in the main who have clear allegiances and such that fact and bias have become hard to separate.

Imagine if ex-players were Referees, we would all claim they favoured their own teams and howl about them officiating  our games, yet we listen to these ‘experts’ give advice without question when they sum up their opinions.

I mean who can claim Alan Hanson, Gary Lineker, Mark Lawrenson or Alan Shearer aren’t biased. Over here we have the world class Steve McManaman bemoaning players effort, I mean ‘really!’ has he watched a DVD of himself playing for Real Madrid?

And then there is the man himself, that world class fullback from Newcastle United who’s name I forget (it’s Warren Barton) but couldn’t trap a bag of cement, making comments about Lionel Messi’s lack of ball control. It just makes me wonder how this happened.

Anyway, my point is summed up in one moment of Manchester United’s recent 2-0 victory over Norwich City at Old Trafford. You all saw it, Rooney thru one on one with the keeper, game safe so he can show us his class, and he chips the goalie and it sails over the bar.

Here in the US it was ‘world class effort by Rooney’ but imagine had that have been Berbatov, same position, chips the keeper and misses. The same ‘expert’ would have described it as a horror miss

My point is that its biased. The favourites like the ‘always a blue’ boy can do no wrong unless they kick a player like Cristiano Ronaldo or Whatsmynameov from Montenegro. Even then they say sorry and that is it.

So let’s start a campaign to tell it like it is, Rooney’s miss was a howler from a player who is losing form again after a couple of decent games. The sooner he hears the truth the sooner he can get his head together and start hitting the target the better,  especially when it’s as big as a barn door in front of his face.

Steve Burrows CBE @ifollowsteve



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