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Jonathan Starling Responds to the Arrogance of uninformed English “Journalists”

Here is the link to the offensive column: http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/sport/columnists/martin_samuel/article2343925.ece?openComment=true#comments-form

Here is Jonathan’s Letter:

If this can please be forwarded to Martin Samuel, I will be greatly appreciated. I’m going to choose my words carefully simply because you seem to be as ignorant on the American sport scene, yet feel the need to comment on them. After reading your latest column today, I couldn’t help but ask myself how stupid you really are as a journalist, more so as a columnist. It’s either stupidity or plain jealously and quite frankly I can’t figure out which it is. Over the years of reading the various red tops and broadsheets from the UK, it all pretty much reads the same way…everything American is bad while everything we do is just a class better…when it could very well be the exact opposite.However what takes the cake with me is your latest stupidity piece (I can hardly call it a column as it feigns ignorance of the highest caliber) and how you sadly think it’s a legit piece of journalism. My questions to you are simply this, why bother watching the league if you could care less about it? Why bother writing a column when all you have done is speak the same lines as the red tops and why you feel the need the need to sink to their level. And ask yourself this question, why does your national Football Association manager still feel the need to recall a player who he said would more or less never get another game again when your Barclay’s Premier League is suppose to have all these top class English players (could it be because said top class players are worthless)? Actually while I’m thinking about it, why did the English Premier League feel the need to remove the English from it…could it be because you as a nation are embarrassed at the fact that there are less English players playing in the Premier League than in any other county in the big four, probably more? Reading through this article I agree with the premise of how stupid Alexi Lalas comments were, as do most Americans who read and saw them and agreed with FIFA. However he is right in saying this is not a semi-retirement home as players have to have more fitness (gee what problem that has become for your very own National Team…can’t say it isn’t a shock) to get through a season with most of the games played between 29.4 and 43.3 C, while traveling thousand of miles on road trips. While you bash Tim Lovejoy, he made a point on his Soccer USA program that (and this is just league matches and remember the Premier League has more fixtures than Major League Soccer) clubs in MLS on the furthest point travels a little more than five times the distance than Newcastle United or Portsmouth do. Care to explain that one as I’m sure you didn’t know that statistic.And I laugh at the players who you think are considered stars in this league? What did you do, just glance at the rosters and only pick out those players who were in the Premier League? Because that is simply laughable at best. I go to Shaka Hislop as my primary example. Was the number one keeper at West Ham United (even started in the FA Cup Final) his final season in the Premier League, for 83 minutes kept England without a goal as keeper of Trinidad and Tobago and yet it took two very fluke goals to beat them. And finally on Shaka Hislop, care to explain why he was the number 3 keeper at FC Dallas and only played with number one keeper Dario Sala was suspended, and do you also care to explain why a youth keeper beat him out for the number 2 position? And while I’m thinking about it, can you possibly explain to me why 4 keepers in your league are Americans? While I’m thinking about it, I would almost guarantee no English keepers would even sniff a first team job in MLS, considering the blunders your goalies love to make week in week out. Now I also see you feel the need to take a swipe at Sky Sports News (another thing I notice, you only seem to bash those bastions of capitalism in England? Is it because your too scared to have the BBC revoke your TV license). Sure you can blame the fact Beckham is in the league for them putting up the the records of those teams involved, however they have been doing this long before Beckham was signed for the Galaxy. Sure you may be asking yourself how the hell I know this, that answer is as simple as Americans getting one hour of Sky Sports Through the Night every single night to follow the Premier League. I find it comical though that you are trying to now justify the Welsh Premier League and the League of Ireland as legitimate leagues. If your looking for true stars in Major League Soccer, start taking a look at Jamie Moreno, Juan Toja, Dwanye DeRosario, Cuahuhtemoc Blanco, Christian Gomez, Taylor Twellman (who will be in the Premier League in January, mark my word), Carlos Ruiz, Ricardinho, Jonathan Borstein, Maykel Galindo, Sacha Kljestan, Ante Razov, and let us not forget about Boca Juniors legend Guillermoe Barros Schelotto (who turned down offers from Europe to play for MLS). Now if you did the research, you would find out that oops none of these players at keepers. I avoided them for the simple fact that 85 percent of keepers playing in MLS are worlds better than any keeper England has produced in the last 40 years. While I’m thinking about it, do you care to answer how is it your rivals do much better in world competitions? Let’s take a look at Germany, they play a tried and tested system that has survived over the years. Let’s take a look at Italy, as dirty as the English think it is, play a tried and tested system. I’ll even take a look at France, as boring and dull as it may sound, play a tried and tested system. When is the last time England have had a tried and tested system? Also why is it that England feel they have to take friendlies seriously when 90 percent of other countries use friendlies to see who fit their systems? I’m going to conclude here as I could end up writing a prose that could end up being longer than the drivel you wrote. All I’m going to say is this, would you want Americans judging the Premier League on the merits of Derby County, Birmingham City…and even Watford and Charlton Athletic last season? Would you want Americans judging the quality of the Premier League based upon Manchester City v Charlton Athletic from last year? If you wouldn’t want us doing that, why do you care to judge this league based upon the worst team in Major League Soccer at present? Also care to explain why Germany’s C team (and could you name more than 5 of them) beat England’s A- team at what your nation consider a fortress? Johnathan Starling


About Kartik Krishnaiyer

A lifelong lover of soccer, the beautiful game, he served from January 2010 until May 2013 as the Director of Communications and Public Relations for the North American Soccer League (NASL). Raised on the Fort Lauderdale Strikers of the old NASL, Krishnaiyer previously hosted the American Soccer Show on the Champions Soccer Radio Network, the Major League Soccer Talk podcast and the EPL Talk Podcast. His soccer writing has been featured by several media outlets including The Guardian and The Telegraph. He is the author of the book Blue With Envy about Manchester City FC.
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