In the wake of Euro 2012
Sir, – I can only confirm the goodwill generated by the Irish supporters in Poland. Having lived and followed Ireland all over Europe from Germany for the past 22 years, it was amazing to return from Gdansk after the match against Spain. Not one of my German friends or business partners wanted to talk about the match. It was us, the Irish they wanted to talk about. The German TV commentator even let the last five minutes of the match run with the Irish fans as the only sound you could hear.
If only the TV cameras of Europe had been in the city centre that afternoon. Polish, Spanish and Irish fans danced, sang, drank and celebrated life. Gdansk on June 14th, 2012 was a special place to be. Thank you Poland. – Yours, etc,
Sir, – Roy Keane and many others are mistaken to believe our fans at Euro 2012 were celebrating defeat or just along for the sing song.
I have played football all my life and help run my local football team who play in the Leinster Senior League.
Many of our players saved up for the last year to go to Poland to support Ireland.
They sang on the terraces to show they are still proud to be Irish despite the hard times on and off the pitch for our country. Not to celebrate defeat.
What should they do? Boo their own team? The truth of this episode is that Roy Keane in now considered a joke by most grassroots football people. Those of us who play every week, put up the nets, pay the ref and support our teams through thick and thin. Keane previously slagged off Irish fans for wearing leprechaun hats. Then when Walkers threw a few quid at him for a TV ad he dons the gombeen leprechaun suit quicker than you can say: “Fail to prepare, prepare to fail”. He also said he would rather die than become an armchair critic.
But after failing in management Roy knows his pot of gold is now to be found in the ITV studios and his other paymasters at the Sun newspaper.
The sadness is that someone who was a football legend to us is now viewed for what he has become. – Yours, etc,