In the manner of tedious and horrid business meetings worldwide, we resort to the bullet-point list format in outlining the positive aspects of such an outcome.
The current manager -- one S. McClaren -- will find that his position is largely untenable. Given the circumstances surrounding his appointment, the evidence available regarding both his tactical ability and his "man-management" skills, the results during his tenure, and the tepid affection in which he is held owing to the aforementioned, this, we argue, is a beneficial outcome, not least because of the damage inflicted upon the "Must be English" school of philosophy partially responsible for his instalment.
We note, with some despondency, that this occurrence may not transpire, given the lingering questions of 'due diligence' hanging over his employers, but we trust that the fevered, voracious and undistracted press, together with the heatedly irrational invective of the fans, will be sufficient to shift the balance of probabilities to this end.
In light of the above occurring, it is to be hoped that the braying blood-lust will be of such magnitude that the summary dismissal of one manager will be insufficient in its quelling effect and that certain jowelsome and equivocating heads further up the chain of command will also have to roll. Should this occur, it is hoped that the excision of the incompetent continue unabated in such a way as to demand full, systematic reform. The power of inertia, however, renders this as being of low probability, however desirable.
The English players will have a whole summer off in which they can rest and recuperate in time to begin the serious business of attempting to qualify for the World Cup the following season.
Furthermore, the invective aimed in the direction of the players will hopefully sting them into some form of self-analysis and improvement, resulting in a rekindled hunger (Note: not 'desire', but hunger) in time for the next qualifying campaign. Given that this ought to have occurred on several previous occasions, it may not happen now, but one can hope.
The Swiss-Austrian authorities will be able to deploy their resources more effectively, not having to worry about three hundred drunken junior gorillas singing 'Ten German Bombers' while molesting passing women and throwing assorted missiles at anyone who asks them to calm down. Yes: We know they're a minuscule minority, but this doesn't prevent them from also being a royal pain in the hole.
On the home front, any reports of violence and police clashes can be received in a spirit of wry amusement, curiosity and vicarious enjoyment of others' transgressions, rather than with the desperately optimistic hope that it wasn't 'our lot', followed by the sinking feeling of shame, disgust and embarrassment that is usually so endemic to these affairs.
In addition, the "waiting game" aspect will no longer apply. Unlike the parents of some sociopathic toddler at a tea party, we will not have a permanent anxiety over what may, possibly, within reason, be about to occur; nor will we silently have to greet every passing flash point with a sense of trepidation, followed by an all-too-temporary sense of guilty relief should nothing untoward transpire.
It simply won't be a factor.
Those of us who actually like football will be able to take in the Euros in relatively enjoyable comfort and discretion, unassailed by the several-dozen tabloid-derived opinions thrust upon our persons daily by people who typically show all the interest of a hagfish. No longer will we have to hear the shrieking and over-demonstrative support (or exaggerated disappointment in the case of a missed goal opportunity) from a co-watcher who then asks, in all sincerity, "Who does Ronaldo play for?"
There will be no horrendously tacky corporate tie-in opportunities. One may even find aggregations of beer in the supermarket without a football and a cross of St. George on their casings. Not every advertisement will follow the "Football!! Now buy our shit ..." paradigm of brand awareness.
There will be no glut of shoddy songs from has-beens, cynical opportunists and, worst of all, the 'official providers' infecting the lower reaches of the charts; no false-dichotomy bullshit discussions over "which one is best".
Perhaps most importantly: There will be no lingering and grey sense of disappointment over how a group of essentially decent players fail to perform as we know they can; no false dawns (beating a lesser team four-nil); no poor performances (losing to the same). Neither the highs nor lows will be as amplified or masochistically masturbated over by all and sundry. Most shockingly: There will be no quarter-final exit on penalties.
For those who dislike football, there will be no football. For those who genuinely like football, there will be nothing but.
Do not misunderstand. I still hope England qualify (but have strong doubts as to whether they will). I'm just saying that it's not all bad should they fail.
Half-full, people. The glass is half-full. I'm quite looking forward to it.
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