With all the talk in recent days about match fixing being investigated, covering Cameroon’s match with Croatia, earlier in the tournament, as well as other matches that have been played before our very eyes, a question has to be asked and discussed at the highest levels. That question is whether it is deemed good for the sport to continue with competitions like the World Cup, when it can be brought into disrepute so easily, as in these and other cases.
The World Cup, when it first began, as well as the times it was the Jules Rimet Trophy, was played for and by professional footballers, but who compared to today’s standards, were not on excessive wages and who therefore, were not subject to the same issues that modern day players are, with people offering them cash to ‘throw’ a game, or games, in order for even bigger money to be gambled, legally or in most cases, illegally.
Perhaps then, a way forward is for the organizers of the World Cup to think about making this so that money is not the primary reason why someone would play for their national side and so that greedy cash hungry players like we have seen cannot be entered into the tournament. With players on £100,000 a week in some circumstances from their league clubs around the world, perhaps what is needed is an amateur World Cup. Yes, there would still be bets. But there would still be the fan following and the desire to see one’s national side do well. But gone would be the acting, cheating individuals of this World Cup, who bring the game so easily into total disrepute with their childish antics.
Perhaps an amateur version of the World Cup, not in the same guise as the Olympics either, could bring about some kind of balance to the amateur game in each country and as a result, when teams and individuals are playing, coaches around the world would be seeing the youngsters playing and would then seek to sign up the really good ones into the professional ranks? This could be their platform into the professional ranks!
Fans across the world are getting fed up with diving forwards, biting attackers, cash hungry forwards who say we will not play unless our government pays us, so called professionals throwing tantrums and teams not showing enough pride in their national shirt. Perhaps now, it is the time to do a shake-up of the game and make changes to what already exists, or to run something else alongside of the World Cup, that offers the organizers of the sport a chance to bring back a sense of balance to proceedings.
If it was you that was left in charge, what would you like to see change?