Monday, March 26, 2007
The surreal nature of the current state of play for the Irish football team is exemplified by this piece from RTÉ, which reminds us that should Ireland defeat Slovakia on Wednesday - not an impossibility though a performance like the one against Wales will not facilitate it - they will become only the fourth Irish team to have won four qualifying games in a row. The previous three all did so on their way to the World Cup finals of 1990, 1994 and 2002. Now, those sides did not have the pleasure of facing San Marino in the first two games of their winning run, nor a Welsh team stricken with endemic incompetence. But it still has to be said that if Ireland win they will be in a surprisingly favourable position with no games to bother them until September, leaving them with plenty of time to sort the mess out, i.e. finding a replacement for Stan. I like the sheen of optimism given to the situation by the national broadcaster. Everybody's happy nowadays, as the Buzzcocks once said (after Aldous Huxley).