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Is There Such A Thing As Too Much Football

There are times in a football supporter’s life where he (or she, you won’t catch me in a Gray/Key-esque scenario) when you think, is there simply too much of it?

Don’t jump down my throat just yet. Let me lay my cards on the table.

Fast forward to August 2012. The new season is about to start. We have just seen England and Ireland both eliminated in the Euro 2012 quarter-finals. An Irish nation consoles. An English nation weeps and the FA vows to never employ another Italian/Swede.

Redknapp/Pearce/Allardyce is appointed, and the general public is told to “watch this space” for 2014.

Meanwhile, the GB Olympic team has also fallen valiantly short of a medal, with a penalty shoot-out defeat against Germany. The creativity-shy and passion-filled performances are viewed with great encouragement for the future.

One or two of the Olympic team’s better players enjoy a mountain of pressure ahead of the new season. The whole country waits with baited breath for the new season to burst out of the blocks, and cheer their tortured souls.

But hang on a minute. All the Europeans are knackered. Only Fernando Torres looks on the ball, as he didn’t get a kick for Spain in the Euros. David Silva fails to reproduce his Premier League and Euro-winning form, and he is proclaimed “finished” and “past his peak” by our glorious experts.

I’m sure we can all envisage such a scenario. Such saturation of football will undoubtedly fill our summers with joy, but part of the game’s beauty, like that of life itself, is the moments of calm, of taking stock, or simply speculating on which aged star your lower league team is looking to take on board.

Instead, expect little-to-no transfer activity until late July, as every scout crowds the stadiums of Poland and Ukraine, not to mention the Olympics. Rest assured, every spend-thrift chairman (so that’s all of them then) will be hoping to snap up an up-and-coming sensation.

I anticipate a lot of disappointed fans at several clubs, as they hear the old “we tried to get players in, but with all the scouts present it was impossible to get a look in” line trotted out around the different boardrooms. Most chairmen don’t need any help looking for excuses not to spend money.

So to answer my question – is there too much football? After such a cynical few paragraphs you might expect the answer to be a resounding yes, but let’s face it, the amusement at watching all this chaos unfold is just another one of those tiny things that make football great.

Gerry Walton

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