Defeat Against Germany Marks Decline of English Football

June 27, 2010 - South Africa - Football - Germany v England FIFA World Cup Second Round - South Africa 2010 - Free State Stadium, Bloemfontein, South Africa - 27/6/10..England's Wayne Rooney looks dejected at the final whistle after failing to qualify for the quarter finals.

Today was a watermark moment in world soccer. And, with great difficulty but complete honesty, I believe that today marks the final evidence that England is no longer a soccer giant.

Depending on which side of the fence you sit on, this may seem like common sense or complete hypocrisy. But if we ever needed any proof that English football, on the national level, is in a massive decline, today was it. England was completely outplayed by a brilliant German side that deserved all three points.

For England to lose so emphatically hurts. But now that they’re out of this World Cup, it makes you wonder what the next generation of the England national football team will look like. England, without a doubt, at a crossroads in terms of its soccer history. The next few years will shape the future of soccer in England and beyond.

There is some hope. England has talented youngsters such as Joe Hart, Stephen Warnock, Leighton Baines, Joleon Lescott, Gabriel Agbonlahor, Tom Huddlestone, Adam Johnson, Theo Walcott, Ashley Young, Jermaine Beckford, Jack Rodwell, Jose Baxter and others. But what they’re lacking is experience and it’s going to take quite some time to turn this team around and get them into being world beaters again.

After England’s departure from the Premier League, I believe now is a turning point in the history of English football. The evidence is clear. English footballers, as a whole, have a difficult time finding their way into the Premier League teams that play in their own country. The youth and development system is mediocre and there are few opportunities to give English footballers a chance to perform at the highest level.

The time for change is now. It’s time for the Premier League to realize that they’re seriously undermining the national team and the national game while they profit from the greatest players around the world that play week-in week-out in English football stadiums — despite very few of them being actual English.

I don’t want to sound like I’m making excuses but today was a turning point in the history of English soccer. If anyone needed any evidence that the FA, Premier League and FIFA needed to make radical changes, today was it. England was cheated out of a goal. Mexico was cheated when a clearly offside goal was awarded to Argentina.

England needs to improve and make radical changes to change the game in its own country. Looking at the German team, you can see one to two generations of excellent players on their team today. And they have depth. England has very few technically good players, and a bunch of mediocre players that seem to only know how to play club football but can’t play with fellow professionals on a national team level.

Germany is to be congratulated, but the bottom line is that England’s legacy as one of the world’s soccer powers finally came to an end today. If ever we needed proof, today was the day.

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