Team GB ‘historic agreement’ – non-English FAs not impressed

The British Olympic Association (BOA) recently reported an ‘historic agreement’ with the English FA. The result of this is that there will be a Team GB taking part in the London 2012 Olympics. Not surprisingly, the SFA and counterparts in Wales and Northern Ireland are, to put it mildly, somewhat upset.

To be honest it all seems a bit of a nonsense. From what I understand, the agreement will allow English players to take part in Team GB during the forthcoming 2012 Olympics. The SFA and FAs in Wales and Northerm Ireland are, as expected, not happy. Each opposes a Team GB. The prospect of anything that would dilute the independence of the separate national teams is never going to go down well. And, despite FIFA promises of the contrary, they see Sepp Blatter and co. using this as an opportunity to push for a permanent UK team. Noone outside of England will tolerate such a move, so opposition is intense.

I’m as against Team GB as anyone. However I think the furore may be irrelevant and too little too late. The FA state that their counterparts in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland have stated that they are not going to prevent players from joining Team GB. So, does any of the recent controversy really matter? If all British players are free to play for a UK Olympic team why does there need to be any ‘historic agreement’? What purpose does it have? And the three other football associations seem to have put themseleves in a position where they can do nothing to prevent non-English paticipation.

I think the other home nations are to blame more than anyone. They seem to be making a fuss about a situation that their past weakness has made unavoidable. They are in no plaace to stop Team GB and are shouting loudly to appear they appear to be without guilt. I’m happy to criticise the FA and BOA when they deserve it. However, I think at least some of the blame lies closer to home.

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