Like many people in this great nation of ours I find myself today inflicted with an entirely unusual sensation: that of Actually Enjoying England's World Cup Progress.
It's most peculiar - I always enjoy the World Cup (and am enjoying it A LOT this time) but the England matches are usually a turgid period of grinding annoyance, boredeom and, ultimately, inevitably, disappointment. THIS time however it has been a DELIGHT. Mr G Southgate seems like a very pleasant chap who appears to have some kind of a PLAN. Not only that, he seems to know how to make it HAPPEN, and - astonishing as it seems - is able to get the players to actually DO it.
This, I feel, is the most astounding aspect of the whole business: the players ARE doing The Plan, and seem to be a) able b) HAPPY to do so. Also, after DECADES of general DISTATE for the England team I find myself actually QUITE LIKING them all. That Raheem Sterling article was GRATE, and every time I see Raheem Sterling on the telly I have an IRRESISTABLE URGE to shake him firmly by the hand, tell him he's done REALLY WELL, and slip him a tenner to spend on whatever he likes.
Yes yes I KNOW that they have not exactly played the best teams yet, but the way they HAVE played has been so POSITIVE that I have found myself rather MOVED by it all. Best of all, I was pleased to be told (repeatedly) by (many) telly commentators that if we DRAW against Belgium on Thursday then the final placings will be decided by FAIR PLAY!
England might win their group because of FAIR PLAY! Good golly, you'd think someone might write a SONG about something like that wouldn't you?
I am thus getting myself prepared for an ONSLAUGHT (i.e. a TWEET) of media activity on Thursday evening, to point out to the world's press that, actually, someone has. Finally, after 20 years of hurt, this could be our time!