As the final whistle blew on Monday night and millions of English hearts broke in unison, Roy Hodgson quietly slipped out of sight and constructed a suspiciously well-crafted letter of resignation which he duly verbalised to the gathering media, ending his four year reign as the national team manager.
The ignominy of England’s performance against Iceland will live in the memory for a long time to come. It was an abject display, lacking any passion, desire or outright quality.
Cue the pitch-fork wielding mob calling for the heads of Hodgson and the entire team on social media.
However, it seems unfair that the players are not able to scribble down a resignation note. Hodgson has somehow managed to wipe his hands of the whole mess and bow out with millions of pounds in his pocket and a smile on his face. Meanwhile, Wayne Rooney and co must face the wrath of the vehement media and fans demanding an explanation as to why England lost to a country whose population is about the same as that of Croydon.
While most fans are delighted at the fact that ‘Woy has wapped up his weign’, some would suggest that resigning when so many questions need answering is an act of pure cowardice.
The FA should make an example of the man who promised so little and delivered even less. Make him see out his contract, which presumably would run until the end of July, so he can answer why performances in this competition have been so woeful. The feeble press conference he gave this afternoon was just simply not sufficient.
In his short, un-explanatory resignation statement, Hodgson exclaimed:
“I am sorry it will have to end this way but these things happen.”
This statement reads like an apology initially but on further inspection, it seems like an excuse. These things happen? No Roy, they most certainly do not.
It’s not as if an unexplainable gust of wind erupted in Nice and the ball flew into the back of the net for Iceland… twice. The defending was lacklustre, the movement was slow, there seemed to be no game-plan, no communication, there were a host of errors, obvious nerves, total lack of passion and most of all no comment from the man in charge of it all after the game; a metaphorical hit and run.
The key reason, Hodgson simply didn’t work for England was his total lack of connection with the fans. The fact that he resigned immediately after the final whistle proves that. Instead of coming out, apologising and explaining what went wrong, he simply left the building and consequentially his position as manager.
The 68-year-old would continually defend his players and profess to them playing well, despite the majority of watching fans thinking otherwise. This Roberto Martinez tact only works when you are performing above expectation levels, not when you have just been knocked out of the European Championship by a side who were ranked 90th in the world three and a half years ago.
A cowardly act to end a disastrous reign. Good luck Mr. Future England Manager. You’ll need it.