At the start of the season,I looked at the first 2 months fixtures and then realised we did not have a game arranged for last weekend - Oh no I thought - another week of boring internationals and no Premiership football!
I feel that more and more fans are feeling the same way when I read other websites and listen to radio phone-ins. I am old enough to remember 1966 when England had their only real success in winning the world cup and I honestly felt that the squad for the next world cup in 1970 were even better and should have at least reached the final again in Mexico.
I remember watching that match against the Germans after we were 2-0 up at halftime and then losing the match 3-2 at full time and feeling absolutely gutted! The result spoilt my evening concert watching a group called 10years after (Wonder what happened to them!) as I still felt very flat. Then in the following season something happened which started to push my interest in England's football team more to the back burner,my team,Arsenal,after years of doing nothing very much in the domestic league,won the double! So through the 1970's and 1980's,my interest in England went on the wain(especially as the teams became packed with players from Manchester United,Liverpool,Leeds and,worst of all,Spurs).
There were very few Arsenal players involved with England during those periods but,in any event,I just felt myself becoming less and less interested even after the match against Argentina in 1986 when Maradonna cheated with his"hand of God". So when the Premiership was started in the 1990's and more and more players came in from all over the world to improve the standard of topline football in this country(which unfortunately had declined in the old first division set up), my interest in England started to drop even further and I found myself looking at international matches where France,Holland,etc were involved because (particularly after Arsene Wenger became Arsenal's manger) I was more interested to watch the Arsenal players involved! I know there was always this debate about Arsenal not encouraging the development of young English players in this country by buying most of their players from overseas but that has now gone out of the window as you can see that many foreign players make up the squads of Manchester United,Liverpool and Chelsea.
So my only real interest in tonights internationals is how many goals will be scored by Arsenal players for their respective national sides and ,hopefully, no injuries because I want a fully fit team for this weekend's derby against the scum! I am afraid that a bad result against Russia will not give me a sleeples night as i am more concerned that Arsenal get 3 points this weekend!