I DON’T Love Lucy

Women and The Man’s Game!

Photo by Mitch Rosen on Unsplash

I used to be OK at chess but reluctantly I have had to turn down commentating on the Todd Wellington (USA)  vs Sven Magnusson (Sweden)  international chess match in Wreck Yer Vick. That’s disappointing because I know that the knight does this weird jumpy thing and that the Nimzo Indian defence means you play three at the back pawns with those castle things down the wing putting in crosses for the advanced queen.

Following 50 years of watching top flight soccer I swear a lot during the match. It is a predominantly male culture. Aggression, fights, beer and profanity-based chanting

Have you noticed, by the way, that should a player receiving a high boot to the goolies near a microphone shout “Fuck!” the broadcaster will announce “Apologies if you heard any bad words there”. Yet the same broadcaster will ignore the crowd “You’re shit. You’re fucking shit. You’re fucking shit……”. Many years ago they used to dim down the crowd but now they don’t.

But now I swear before they have kicked off.

“You’re commentors today are Darren Fletcher and Lucy W……”. Fuck Off. Just Fuck Off! It is automatic now. A subconscious visceral stimulated response.

Another broadcast spoiled for me because I will have to listen with no sound. OK, I can see for myself what’s going-on but it also means the crowd sound is denied. Amazon Prime did a smart thing. You could choose between commentary or just the stadium noise.

The role of the commentator goes deeper than “Jones passes to Richards. Richard crosses into the middle. The ball is picked up by Smith…… Goal!” That’s how it used to be in Black and White and The Big Match. Then they realised some ex-professional footballers could actually speak complete sentences and hired them to co-commentate. The commentator named the players,  gave some biographical background, described what just happened and the pro explained that the ball took a nick off the defender who should have been marking Snodgrass and left it to Phillips. The pro, through his years of experience at the highest level sees things that you and I don’t.

The pro sees the changes in formation. The pro describes the reason why a formation change was made. The commentator will tell you that Buendia plays for Argentina and has been chosen for the preliminary 52 for the World cup and last year was out for 8 weeks with a hamstring injury.

The match starts as a blank canvas and between them the commentator and co-commentator fill in the colour.

If Bobby McFarlane of Ilchester Rovers, Midlands Division South, were to co-commentate on Chelsea vs Nottingham Forest he has no more insight on the role of Kante than I do, just because he’s a bloke who kicked a ball for M & S Vouchers.

So, why do they think that a Lucy Ward or Karen Carney have anything to contribute that is meaningful and insightful to the modern Man’s Game?

“Oh! That will be a painful one”, says Darren. “how do you play on after a kick in the goolies, Karen?”

Italian and German uber-passion kicked-off when Tuchel assaulted Conte by grabbing his hand and didn’t let go Graeme Souness said “It’s a man’s game after all”, and got castigated for it. It IS a Man’s Game.

I saw that “Spurs Women” beat “Brighton’s Women” 8-1 away. I thought I’d look at the highlights for a laugh. And a laugh it was. A few hundred in the crowd. The way to score goals is lob the goalkeeper. Even from 60 yards you have a good chance of scoring. It was pathetic. Half speed and full of mistakes. No need for slow action replays. Normal speed is fine.

Women’s Soccer is a totally different game and the experiences of a Karen or Lucy have absolutely nothing meaningful to contribute to The Man’s Game.

It makes me imagine  Roy Walker in the background and he’s saying “Keep watching Lucy and just say what you see”. We don’t need someone repeating what the commentator or fellow pundit just said. Its obvious that it’s what they are doing.

How can you possibly equate a Lucy or Karen with Ally McCoist, Glen Hoddle, Graeme Souness, Gary Neville, Jamie Carragher, Steve McManaman, Owen Hargreaves, Jermaine Jenas, Martin Keown, Robbie Savage, Alan Smith, Andy Hinchcliffe, Kevin Keegan, Chris Waddle……

There’s a reason why 95% of commentators and co-commentator/pundits are men.

It is clear tokenism/wokeism. I laugh that they have introduced “Player of the Match” simply because in women’s soccer it would be strange to award “Woman of The Match” because the award has always been “Man of The Match”.

We have the crazy situation where BT Sport could award Hugo Loris “Player of the Match” for his performance against Marseilles while EUFA awarded him their “Man of the Match” accolade.

And, I notice that whenever Sky ask Gary Neville to name his “Player Of The Match” he says “My Man of the Match is….”.

I have absolutely nothing against women around soccer. Most of them are studio anchors. It’s just that it’s obvious that for some woke reason they are being put into roles for which they aren’t qualified much more than a dedicated fan or a weekend amateur.

There is the very funny “Where’s the Bloke” sketch with Paul Whitehouse Where’s the bloke? – YouTube

But I should be fair here. Women interviewers questions are no more banal than their male counterparts.

I will be totally fair here. I have listened to matches broadcast by ESPN and a main commentator was a woman. Excellent she was. Jonathan Pearce-like commentary. I wouldn’t switch her off.

Dread is approaching. The World Cup. The Cream of the Cream. Four matches a day. How many top International matches will be ruined. TBF I don’t bother with pre, half-time and post match punditry. Just give me the match.

When I asked her what she thought about the role as sweeper she named her favourite player Bex Bissell”

“The atmosphere is like a pressure cooker in here.

“Arsenal don’t have too much up top”

“Darren, I remember last year in the Always cup Sheila Mgumbo scored a very similar goal like that”

© Lugosi – Under Surveillance for Thought Crimes. November 2022