The draw in the Football World Cup playoffs between France and Ireland puts me in a difficult and unenviable position. I am faced with an incredible dilemma, trying to decide which team I would like to see lose more.
My team, Northern Ireland, is out, and of course I want to see England win the World Cup. But this isn’t about winning for me, nor even taking part. An unfortunate consequence of the playoff draw is that either France or Ireland (National Motto: “A well balanced nation with a chip on each shoulder”) will go through. That’s lamentable.
So, how does someone with an irrational, childish, offensive, misanthropic and uncouth national antipathy for both France and Ireland go about deciding who to jeer more? Whose winning goal would be more sickeningly disappointing and why? Whose career ending mistake in a crunch match would warm my dark heart more?
In any other confrontation, it would of course be simple. I would cheer anyone but Ireland or France, just like in the Six Nations. That option is not now open to me, nor is paying no attention. It will be fun to revel in the national disappointment of one or the other, and that will justify the purchase of Champagne and Jamesons, to salute the demise of the garlic munching, cheese fetishising surrender monkeys with bubbly, or the capitulation of the bogtrotters with firewater. Only the delight and relief of the winner will dampen the celebrations.
So, how does someone with an irrational, childish, offensive and uncouth national antipathy for both France and Ireland go about deciding who to jeer more? Whose winning goal would be more sickeningly disappointing and why? Whose career ending mistake in a crunch match would warm my dark heart more?
The French vetoed our membership of the EU, of course, but it turns out we’d be better off out of it. Inadvertantly chalk one up for Ireland.
Until 1998, Ireland had an illegal territorial claim on Northern Ireland. That’s one more in the anti-Ireland column. Then, when they abandoned Articles 2 and 3 of Bunreacht na hEireann, that paved the way for Sammy Wilson to be a Minister in our government. One more for Ireland.
So, three nil to Ireland. France likes to pretend it won the Second World War, which is pretty ungrateful, frankly. One to the Perrier quaffers. And then, of course, they sold Exocet and Super Étendards to the Argies before the Falklands war.
Then there’s the burning sheep incident from the nineties, which doesn’t endear them. Add to that the general attitude of that godforsaken nation motto “One Nation Above God”, particularly Paris, and we have a draw.
Until we remember the Mururoa Atoll.
Say what you want about the micks, they have never once nuked a coral reef. On the other hand, France somewhat made up for it by sinking Rainbow Warrior, which was very amusing, so let’s give them a break.
This will undoubtedly be a tough decision to take, and I’m sure each nation will be vying for the support of this blog in the furtherance of their footballing aspirations.