Wednesday, September 09, 2015


Two examples of loyalty today, both very different.  The first and most genuine is that of Her Majesty the Queen becoming the country`s longest serving monarch.  I remember as a callow youth hearing her declare that she would devote her life to serving the country and she has fulfilled that promise with great distinction.  

Now there are people who are decidedly anti-monarchy and whilst I would not go that far, I do have reservations about the number of royals, the hangers-on, the pomp and expensive circumstance;  indeed, I turned down an invitation to a Garden Party at Buck House simply because I didn`t want to go.  But I do not question the Queen`s loyalty and I wish her well on this historic milestone.

Also today we heard about and possibly saw Wayne Rooney become England`s top goalscorer in internationals when he slammed home a convenient penalty in the 2-0 win over Switzerland last evening.   But, whilst acknowledging the 50 goals he has now scored for his country, I`m reluctant to  congratulate him too warmly for a number of reasons. 

His record shows that he has scored just two goals in any major tournament since 2004 and has never scored in the knockout phase of any major tournament  The  goal he scored last year against Uruguay was a tap in and the one against Ukraine was a free header from all of six inches.   Now, 50 goals is 50 goals but it`s worth remembering that a good number of Rooney`s have been penalties and others have been against the likes of San Marino, Andorra, Estonia, Montenegro, Slovenia and Belarus.   Sir Bobby Charlton he ain`t.

It also has to be said that, as the current captain of England he cuts a rather forlorn figure.  Not his fault of course, but one might expect our captain to represent the country with arguably a little more ambassadorial dignity than has so far been shown.   But coming to my second example of loyalty on this memorable day, I am reminded that Mr. Rooney, whilst admittedly still very young, pledged himself to the cause of Everton by much enthusiastic badge kissing and declaring himself to be "A Blue Forever."   Whereupon he promptly upped sticks, abandoned his avowed loyalty and left Goodison Park for the Evil Empire of Old Trafford.

I really do hope - probably more for his own sake than anything else - that Her Majesty might resist the urge to dub Rooney `Sir Wayne.`   It really doesn`t sound right and things that don`t sound right seldom are.

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