England Football Player Blames Video Games For Team Failure

from the what,-no-other-countries-have-playstations? dept

We see all sorts of problems being blamed on technology, but here's a new one. An English football/soccer player is now blaming video games for England's inability to reach the finals of the Euro 2008 football championships. It's not entirely clear what is so objectionable about the video game consoles, as his comments aren't exactly clear in terms of reasoning: "We would have the best team if we could go into every household and throw away every PlayStation, Xbox and video game." Apparently, other countries are better because people have nothing better to do: "Other countries seem to bring on world-class players, countries like Argentina and Brazil where often it's football or nothing. In contrast we live in a country where we have choices and perhaps the will to do it, the need to escape your own situation, is not so clear." If I'm parsing that correctly, it sounds like he's actually saying it's pretty much all progress that's to blame. If the country were in squalor and the only way to survive was to play the sport, then the national team would be better. He may be right... but, of course, it means that (beyond happy fans), you'd have a pretty miserable country.


Reader Comments (rss)

(Flattened / Threaded)

  1.  
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    James, Nov 28th, 2007 @ 10:16am

    Who says...

    ..the english don't have a sense of humor, perhaps he got his metaphor for video games from Elton's take on the internet?

     

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  2.  
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    More Practice, Nov 28th, 2007 @ 10:22am

    The Pigskin is better

    This is pretty funny, this guy is blaming video games for his teams laziness. He must understand that FIFA 08 is just a video game, an while he is moving his fingers he should be moving his ass. Don't blame others for your short comings buddy, i'm sure there are hundreds of soccer players that play video games an will own him on the playing field.

     

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  3.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Nov 28th, 2007 @ 10:23am

    "The english don't have a sense of humor"

    We don't? I thought it was just that those across the ocean are a bit dense to understand the whole "sarcasm" concept, but if you say so.

     

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  4.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Nov 28th, 2007 @ 10:26am

    I don't see much that's objectionable, really.

    He's not saying that we should go and stop people playing consoles, just that if we were to do so, kids would probably end up playing a lot more sports, and would get better. It's pretty much a rarity in England to see children playing sports in parks, etc.

    It obviously doesn't account for before the current technological era; England still sucked before we had consoles, but I don't think it's as absurd as you're making out.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Nov 28th, 2007 @ 10:29am

    Re: The Pigskin is better

    "Don't blame others for your short comings buddy, i'm sure there are hundreds of soccer players that play video games an will own him on the playing field."

    He doesn't seem to be talking about the current generation of professionals, as much as the next crop to be coming through; look at the quotes, not the headline.

    The young are far more likely to be sitting on their ass eating cake and playing on their PS3 than they are to be playing sports. Obviously that's the choice of the individual but that's another issue.

     

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  6.  
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    John, Nov 28th, 2007 @ 10:31am

    Hmm....an interesting theory that is not supported by evidence. Last 2 World Cup winners? Italy and France....real third world countries...NOT.

     

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  7.  
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    Nicko, Nov 28th, 2007 @ 10:31am

    you know...

    I could have the best search engine company on the internet if all the others didn't exist.

    Radio have tons of listeners if everyone stopped using TVs.

    and candles would be big business if everyone would just stop using electricity.

    Of course I bet he would change his tune once FIFA 2008, PES 2008, World cup endorsements go away, all the TV ads dry up, and athletes go back to making 5% of what they make now.

     

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  8.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Nov 28th, 2007 @ 10:34am

    Re: you know...

    You seem to know little about the sporting economy. The main revenue stream comes from the rights to broadcast matches, how would this be affected by there being no console gaming?

     

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  9.  
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    mat552, Nov 28th, 2007 @ 10:37am

    Re:

    Well, so long as the bandwagon is going, England does have a tendency to be rather rainy, plus, to be honest, parks (at least in my area) are in disrepair. My town is to afraid to repair them becuase they just finished paying off a stupid lawsuit.

     

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  10.  
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    Chuck Norris' Enemy (deceased), Nov 28th, 2007 @ 10:45am

    Gasp!

    Sports isn't the most important thing to people any more? We no longer idolize overpaid men playing games? The humanity!

     

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  11.  
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    Old Guy, Nov 28th, 2007 @ 10:45am

    Choices

    I guess in countries where there are a lot of choices for activities soccer can't
    1. Keep it's youth interested
    2. Or as in the case of the US, be much more than the "other" football. (yeah, yeah I know, soccer is getting ready to explode!!, has been for twenty years. Just ask Pele and Beckham who were going to put it on the map here)
    3. Or maybe people just need to realize that the more choices there are, the less people will be participating in each...

     

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  12.  
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    Duodave, Nov 28th, 2007 @ 10:50am

    Not a new argument...

    The same has been said about the large percentage of black players in professional teams in the US - that sports ends up being an important factor in how impoverished athletes can get out of their poor neighborhoods.

     

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    Rational Beaver, Nov 28th, 2007 @ 11:07am

    That's funny. I've actually heard this same argument from a Brazilian player about one of his teammates after they lost in the last World Cup.

     

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  14.  
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    SteveD, Nov 28th, 2007 @ 11:25am

    This seems more media-hype then real insight

    Sorry Mike, but I think you've missed a trick on this one.

    Although the headline blazes it out, what the player was actually talking about is how the lack of good young English talent coming through is becoming a real problem for the sport. Only 1/3 of footballers in the top devisions are English.

    He pointed out the differences with countries like Brazil, where football is seen as a way out of the poverty trap and so produces players with a real drive to succeed. In the west we have far more forms of escapism, which clearly is going to have a wider sociological effect.

    But these may be difficult concepts to grasp for a country that shys away from international competition so much, and would much rather take an exsisting sport, change the rules a little bit then declare them selfs world champions. :P

    Also factual errors in your piece;
    1. It wasn't the finals, but the qualifiers (as in, to get into the competition in the first place.
    2. It isn't 'soccer', but football.
    3. Football sucks.

     

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  15.  
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    Lord Huffington, Nov 28th, 2007 @ 11:54am

    Re:

    I dont think he was being sarcastic. i think he was trying to make a belligerent point, which i dont hold against him. we all do that. and for the record, there is never been a more sarcastic people than americans, and James could have been anything else. maybe canadian. clearly he has no idea what he is talking about, from Monty python to peter cook to eddie izzard, the english have some of the funniest people in history. show some props. God bless Graham Chapman.

     

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  16.  
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    Atra Mors, Nov 28th, 2007 @ 12:07pm

    This jerk-off premier player gets at least £50.000 a week!! He is pampered out of his brains, lives a scandalous live stile, hasn't really gotten anything achieved in live but to kick a ball about never mind forming a coherent sentence and then he goes and tells the nation that the gaming industry is to blame? Hang on - isn't it EA Sports and some of the others that give the England team the multi-million pound advertising contracts? Talking about shooting the hand that feeds you...

    These are overpaid 'athletes' that have forgotten what the sport is all about - maybe we should treat them the way Brazil and Argentina is treating their premier league footballers so they get a taste of how good they got it and where it comes from...

     

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  17.  
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    brwyatt@gmail.cm, Nov 28th, 2007 @ 12:30pm

    LOL

    WTF?!?!?! this is so ridiculous its hilarious! hell, based on that logic school is bad too, because there are so many good athletes that would be able to play on the team if they didn't have hours of homework and school to attend! lol... not only that, but not everyone is interested in sports, hell, I don't even watch them (well, some times...)!

    Seems like when something doesn't go your way, either blame video games, the internet, or the government. welcome to 2007. lol

    (i just can't take this guy seriously at all! lol)

     

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  18.  
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    Tootz McGruder, Nov 28th, 2007 @ 12:34pm

    Soccer is Cheap!

    There is a reason 3rd world countries mainly play soccer. It's one of the cheapest sports in the world. All you need is a blanket tied up with string in a ball-shape, and a few goal markers.

    Same with basketball; it's cheap, so it's a popular "urban" sport.

     

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  19.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Nov 28th, 2007 @ 3:01pm

    FREAKING BRS

    Never mind the fact that in a lot of games (Ragnarök Online, Guild Wars, etc), particularly MMOs, Brazilian players (aka BRs, due to BR being the shorthand of Brazil) are amongst the highest in level and farming. If they do nothing but play soccer (is it just me or is this racist/discrimination?) how do they spend so much time on those games.

     

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  20.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Nov 28th, 2007 @ 5:12pm

    Re: This seems more media-hype then real insight

    In Argentina, we call it "Futbol".

    And well, I've known plenty of people who's only real fun activity do to was football, and then people starting getting Famicoms (NES) by the mid 90's (yes, we were that far behind then) and things started to change.

    Videogames are a growing market here, but as far as next-gen consoles go, it's mostly a privilege for the rich or very well off.
    There are still many many kids who have nothing better to do than play football, so I figure Argentina will continue as it has.

     

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  21.  
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    Spin, Nov 28th, 2007 @ 8:48pm

    Re:

    ""The english don't have a sense of humor"

    We don't? I thought it was just that those across the ocean are a bit dense to understand the whole "sarcasm" concept, but if you say so."

    Proof of point

     

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  22.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Nov 29th, 2007 @ 4:56am

    Re: Choices

    Football may not have exploded in the US but it sure as hell has exploded just about everywhere else in the world...

     

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  23.  
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    ipanema, Nov 29th, 2007 @ 10:44am

    that's plain lame excuse. perhaps whoever said that may have spent most of his free time just doing that. and how sure is he that those players from countries he mentioned couldn't afford all those games? lol.

     

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  24.  
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    football, Jan 30th, 2008 @ 1:04am

    lol

    england all the way

     

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  25.  
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    football, Jan 30th, 2008 @ 1:10am

    Re: lol

    that's a plain lame excuse. perhaps whoever said that may have sent most or there free time just doing that instead of other stuff. football may not have exploded in the us but it sure as hell has exploded just about everywhere else in the world.We don't? I thought it was just that those across the ocean are a bit dense to understand the whole "sarcasm" concept, but if you say so." We don't? I thought it was just that those across the ocean are a bit dense to understand the whole "sarcasm" concept, but if you say so. the english don't have a sense of humor, perhaps he got his metaphor for video games from Elton's take on the internet? WTF?!?!?! this is so ridiculous its hilarious! hell, based on that logic school is bad too, because there are so many good athletes that would be able to play on the team if they didn't have hours of homework and school to attend! lol... not only that, but not everyone is interested in sports, hell, I don't even watch them (well, some times...)! Seems like when something doesn't go your way, either blame video games, the internet, or the government. welcome to 2007. lol
    (i just can't take this guy seriously at all! lol)
    This is pretty funny, this guy is blaming video games for his teams laziness. He must understand that FIFA 08 is just a video game, an while he is moving his fingers he should be moving his ass. Don't blame others for your short comings buddy.

    do u all think that is too long lol. have fun reading it lol

     

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