Thursday, April 07, 2011

ASBO's foible

Say what you like about ASBO, but he's certainly prepared to say what he thinks. Not for him the usual platitudes - if he doesn't rate you, he'll say so.

Which is great, if you are a journalist looking for copy.

But probably not so great if you're a talented, in-form midfielder looking to force your way into the national squad.

So today, we have the news that ASBO has given an interview to French magazine So Foot. In it, he suggests that he's arguably the best English midfielder in the country at present (acknowledging that Jack Wilshere is also doing well). To be fair to him, with the possible exception of Scott Parker, it's difficult to take issue with that assertion.

ASBO goes on to heavily criticise Gareth Barry's recent performances and his appearing to behave like Capello's "teacher's pet" before specifically criticising his tracking of Mesut Ozil for Germany's fourth goal in the World Cup as being akin to a race between tortoise and hare.

Of course, the fact that ASBO is so ready and willing to slate his fellow professionals is probably one of the principal reasons why Fabio Capello has continually refused to call him up for England. What ASBO considers to be the behaviour of a "teacher's pet", Capello might construe to be professionalism and respect.

Perhaps more interestingly for us is the revelation that he wants to the club to demonstrate their ambition before he signs a contract extension - which, in light of the sale of Rocky, is not an unreasonable requirement for a player who probably still owes the club a fair bit (after the years of patience we've shown since his arrival) but whose current performances have been a significant factor in our results this season.

I think we'd all like to see the club show ambition through the reinvestment of the Rocky cash, contract extensions of our best players and new quality signings, and in that, ASBO is no different to the rest of us.




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