Whilst the Premier League is a generally stressful time of the year, it is at the closing stages that prove to be the more demanding. Those who are competing for the title, and those who are battling to retain another year in top flight football, are all subject to such powerful demands, that inter-club fighting and rows have become somewhat natural and normal, and Chelsea are the latest team to prove this.
Sir Alex Ferguson’s row with David Beckham in 2003 – yes the one involving a football boot – whilst being plagued upon and interpreted by the British Press as a sign of corruption, and a sign of alcoholism, it can be seen as a sign of immense passion for the football game. More recently, Arsenal’s Adebayor also had a confrontation with fellow team mate Bendtner, which was again interpreted by the back page as a conflict that could not be resolved nor justified.
Liverpool have also had their own form of conflict earlier this season between the manager, the owners and the fan – however, this has deemed to be more catastrophic and significant in regard to on-field form and closed door harmony. Not to forget Craig Bellamy’s golf club massacre against fellow team mates in 2006.
Chelsea’s coach Ten Cate and defender John Terry have also been reported to be involved with a training field argument.
Cate informed Sky Sports of the issue:
“We are both kind of emotional, but we respect each other fully,”
“We just had a discussion about the intensity of the training session. That’s a normal part of the game. There have been a few F-words, no doubt. But that’s common in England.”
“There was a special tension on Saturday,”
“We have 27 players and three keepers but only a few of them could play.
“John wanted to have even more intensity in training but I didn’t agree as we were just one day before the match. That was all. Me and John get on well. John won’t disagree.
This is becoming all too common – yet, in the end, isn’t that just the sport? Doesn’t the round-ball evoke such fury? Will the likes of Tottenham, Bolton, Everton, Manchester City and Aston Villa experience such a shunned emotion?