England Players Rebell! (1 Viewer)

Jul 12, 2002
5,666
#1
From Soccernet:


England players still threaten boycott
England will be disqualified from Euro 2004 if the squad rebellion forces the national team to forfeit their match in Turkey at the weekend, according to the Football Association's Paul Barber.

Rio Ferdinand: Eye of the storm (JamieMcDonald/GettyImages)
The England players are reported to have unanimously voted in favour of missing Saturday's Euro 2004 qualifier if Rio Ferdinand is not reinstated to the squad.

The Manchester United defender was yesterday left out of the 24-man party named by Sven-Goran Eriksson as a policy decision taken by the FA after he had failed to take a scheduled drugs test.

Talks continued today but there has been no resolution yet and FA communications and marketing director Barber warned that England face disqualification from Euro 2004 if no solution can be reached.

Barber revealed that the ultimate sanction available to UEFA was to exclude England from the tournament for failing to fulfil the fixture, which would be awarded 3-0 to Turkey.

'If England do not compete we will be disqualified from the tournament,' he said.

'The key to this is to keep talking and to resolve it as quickly as we can.

'There are a number of issues but the most important one is we have a match to play on Saturday.'

Barber admitted that there was still some way to go before common ground was found.

'I think there's still some time to go before we can say that we've got a solution that everybody is happy with,' he added.

'I think the players would ideally like Rio back into the squad.

A process of consultation, thought and consideration would lead to a solution, according to Barber.

'The England players have at their disposal a number of positions. One of those options is not to travel to Turkey.'

With the threat of disqualification hanging over England, Barber, asked if there was a contingency plan to call up another squad of players, replied: 'We want this game to go ahead on Saturday with this group of players.'

Barber added: 'The most important thing is that we get this game on. We will do everything in our power to make that happen.

'We have another meeting with the players tonight and we will see where we are after that.

'Everyone is aware how important this issue is and how important this game is. Everyone wants to find a resolution.'

Barber reiterated the FA stance that Ferdinand could not be included in the squad despite his colleagues protest.

'I think the players would ideally like Rio Ferdinand back in the squad. That is something that the FA are not prepared to do,' he said.

'I think it's fair to say feelings in the England camp been running high following the decision not to select Rio for the squad.

'We've held a number of very constructive meetings with senior players in the England squad.

'We totally respect and appreciate the views of the players. We've listened and will continue to listen until this is resolved.

'The players will be meeting again this evening to discuss the situation again and we very much look forward to hearing the outcome of those discussions.

'The discussions I've had with the players have been amicable. There is a very good spirit in the England camp and that's something we want to maintain despite a difficult few days.'

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Thoughts? Concerns? Celebrations?
 

vitoria_Ally

Senior Member
Jul 14, 2002
7,232
#2
First of all: I would like to know what happened exactly with that test. I've read, that he took the test 36 hours later. I've read that he:
1. or forgot
2. or refused

But he came out clean.

What about FA rules in this matter?
I've read, that if player refuse/dont make such test on time, they may consider it even as positive result of test.

One of people from FA said, that Ferdinand's appearance in NT after he didnt make test on time would be improper.

So first I would like to know for sure all this, I said above.


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But regardless of what's going on with that test, the players seem to forget, that they dont play only for themselves, they are representans of their country.
So such words: we wont play, unless Rio will join us - it's just beyond me.
 

Martin

Senior Member
Dec 31, 2000
56,836
#3
Well it's pretty dumb for them to rebel cause of Rio's exclusion since it would mean the whole team is excluded from the competition. But if that's your priorities then by all means.. what's the interest of a nation compared to some delinquent's personal situation anyway..
 
Sep 14, 2003
5,800
#4
Could'nt really care less, it won't happen but I wouldn't miss them if they were kicked out. They'll either come to thier senses or players who will go would be chosen.
 
OP
OP
Ian
Jul 12, 2002
5,666
#5
++ [ originally posted by Alex ] ++
Well it's pretty dumb for them to rebel cause of Rio's exclusion since it would mean the whole team is excluded from the competition. But if that's your priorities then by all means.. what's the interest of a nation compared to some delinquent's personal situation anyway..
That's really wierd, because I'm thinking the exact opposite. I really would never have expected the England squad oto do something like this. I never thought that they had this much cohesion and leadership. To me, this shows that they are in fact a team and they care about the members of that team. I don't think that they will actually go through with it if they fail, but if they win and the FA gives in, then they will be unbeatable in Turkey.

I think that RIo is not at fault and I also think that the FA is being ridiculous about this punishment. He missed his test, then came back, and tested clean. he hasn't done anything more than miss an appointment, and I see no reason to ban him for that.
 

Martin

Senior Member
Dec 31, 2000
56,836
#6
Indeed it does show loyalty and if it's just a bluff against an arbitrary FA decision then I guess it could pay off. But if they actually did go on strike, I would think most people would just be pissed at England's exclusion from the tournament.
 
OP
OP
Ian
Jul 12, 2002
5,666
#8
++ [ originally posted by Alex ] ++
Indeed it does show loyalty and if it's just a bluff against an arbitrary FA decision then I guess it could pay off. But if they actually did go on strike, I would think most people would just be pissed at England's exclusion from the tournament.
I don't think that they would actually strike, but if they do, the FA will jsut call up another squad. I mean, how hard would it be to get Macca and Thompson and those boys to get on a plane to Turkey. I'd kinda like to see that happen, just so we can see those guys in the England shirt.
 

vitoria_Ally

Senior Member
Jul 14, 2002
7,232
#9
++ [ originally posted by Rickenbacker2 ] ++
I think that RIo is not at fault and I also think that the FA is being ridiculous about this punishment. He missed his test, then came back, and tested clean. he hasn't done anything more than miss an appointment, and I see no reason to ban him for that.
So who is at fault?
He said he had had a move, so he forgot to make test.
Is he 5 years old boy or a professional player?

I'm still asking: can someone confirm FA rules in this matter?
But if I was right in my post above, FA is right to ban him.
 

mikhail

Senior Member
Jan 24, 2003
9,569
#10
Apparently, he informed the FA that he'd been held up because he was moving house, and then he took the test and was found clean.

Think about it - he's failed no test. Why is he being punished?
 

mikhail

Senior Member
Jan 24, 2003
9,569
#12
Maybe, but it seems a stupid and heavy-handed way of doing it. Why was his name released? He's not even had his case heard, and he's been thrown out of the England squad and had his name plastered over the papers. That's a disgraceful way of handling things.

BTW, the players have backed down, but expressed their disappointment with the FA.
 

gray

Senior Member
Moderator
Apr 22, 2003
30,077
#13
++ [ originally posted by Rickenbacker2 ] ++

I don't think that they would actually strike, but if they do, the FA will jsut call up another squad. I mean, how hard would it be to get Macca and Thompson and those boys to get on a plane to Turkey. I'd kinda like to see that happen, just so we can see those guys in the England shirt.
Too true, that's what Australia did in their world cup qualifiers against tiny island countries... they probably just pulled guys off the street and slapped green and gold shirts on them... yet we still managed to win by scorelines of 34-0 :LOL:

I think this is really stupid, sure they're showing loyalty and stuff, but they represent their country, and having your country excluded from the tournament wouldn't help anyone. If they're gonna protest, they should at least take their protest onto the field, and all wear shirts with messages on them or something :rolleyes:
 

gray

Senior Member
Moderator
Apr 22, 2003
30,077
#14
SOCCERNET

Strike averted but players angry
The England squad tonight stepped back from the brink of strike action ahead of Saturday's Euro 2004 qualifier against Turkey - but only after stinging criticism of the Football Association.

The players issued a statement in which they accused the FA of letting down both them and Sven-Goran Eriksson with their treatment of Rio Ferdinand after his failure to take a drugs test on time.

They insisted there had never been any serious question over their participation in the final group game, even though they voted unanimously in favour of a threat to boycott the game if Ferdinand was not recalled.

Instead, they attempted to lay the blame for a fiasco of their own making at the door of the FA, claiming the governing body's stance had 'made the team weaker against the wishes of the manager and the players'.

Eventually, after Ferdinand phoned his team-mates to tell them to play on, the threat of expulsion from Euro 2004 if the match was not played, as well as growing public condemnation, had an effect.

The FA also tried to give some ground by offering to review some of their disciplinary procedures after listening to the views of leading players, led by David Beckham, Sol Campbell, Michael Owen and Gary Neville.

And so, just after 9pm, a solution was finally reached, although it was one that still left the England team and the FA at apparent loggerheads as the squad seemed to ignore the most salient fact of all - that Ferdinand had actually failed to give a drugs test when required.

The squad's statement declared: 'It is our opinion that the organisation we represent has not only let down one of our team-mates, but the whole of the England squad and its manager.

'We feel that they have failed us very badly.

'One of our team-mates was penalised without being given the rights that he is entitled to and without any charges being brought against him by the governing body of the game.

'Rio Ferdinand was entitled to confidentiality and a 'fair' hearing in front of an independent commission.

'We believe the people responsible for making the decision did not give Rio Ferdinand that due process and [that] has disrupted and made the team weaker against the wishes of the manager and the players.

'All the England players are proud to wear the England shirt and would never let England, Sven-Goran Eriksson or our magnificent fans down.'

The statement added: 'We apologise to our manager, staff and fans for any concerns that may have arisen over the past few days.

'In our minds, there has never been any question as to whether we would play in this game. We will continue our preparations for Saturday's game.

'We are fully focused on the match in Istanbul and the only thing that matters to the whole of the England squad and manager is that we qualify for the European Championships next summer.'

The FA had defiantly stood by their decision not to select Ferdinand, but were willing to allow the players to release an unedited statement as part of the settlement.

FA director of communications Paul Barber said: 'We took a policy decision, we stood by it in the face of enormous pressure and we were right to do it.

'The players conducted themselves in difficult circumstances very professionally. They had strong views and we are comfortable that they have expressed those views.'

FA chief executive Mark Palios added: 'We've heard what the players have had to say on Rio's situation and the general situation of anti-doping rules.

'We've listened carefully to them and they have some very strong views. I have to work with the procedures currently in place and we've already started a comprehensive review of these.'

While Palios went on to insist that the FA had never breached Ferdinand's right of confidentiality, Eriksson was meanwhile left to breathe a sigh of relief as the threat of a strike evaporated.

The England coach had done his best to stay out of the row, retaining the loyalty of his players in the process.

'It has been a different build-up to this game, I must say,' he said. 'We haven't started to talk football yet, which is a little bit strange.

'I am very happy to see everything has been sorted out before the game. From tomorrow we can focus 200% on football.'

He added: 'The players have created a very strong group and I am sure you will see that as well on Saturday in Turkey.

'I really look forward to the next few days, to football talk and the game.'

That a solution was eventually found was just as well.

Then again, this has not only been the worst possible build-up to such a vital game but, sadly, it comes amid a fortnight of which English football can only be ashamed.

-----------------------------------

The last paragraph is too true, there have been too many stupid things going on in English football for this to happen now :wallbang:
 

mikhail

Senior Member
Jan 24, 2003
9,569
#15
++ [ originally posted by gray ] ++
Too true, that's what Australia did in their world cup qualifiers against tiny island countries... they probably just pulled guys off the street and slapped green and gold shirts on them... yet we still managed to win by scorelines of 34-0 :LOL:

I think this is really stupid, sure they're showing loyalty and stuff, but they represent their country, and having your country excluded from the tournament wouldn't help anyone. If they're gonna protest, they should at least take their protest onto the field, and all wear shirts with messages on them or something :rolleyes:
An Australian-Irishman called Tim Cahill, who plays for Millwall in England, was visiting his granny in Samoa (or American Samoa?) at the age of thirteen. A bloke saw him playing football in the street and asked him if he wanted to play in a tournament.

Turns out it was an U21s tournament, but Tim's a very good player, and he got his game. Only when he tried to play for Ireland, years later, did he find out that he's a registered international for some crappy island in the middle of nowhere, and FIFA won't let him out of it.
 

mikhail

Senior Member
Jan 24, 2003
9,569
#17
Italy would finish first on goal differance (theirs wasn't negative) after making a pigs ear out of the whole qualifying thing.

Though I can just see Papa New Guinea pressing hard for an equaliser... :)
 

gray

Senior Member
Moderator
Apr 22, 2003
30,077
#19
Hehe Martin, you're just bitter that Norway got left out even though everyone was on 4 points :p
 

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