Regular readers of this site will recall we mentioned the fact the at the London 2012 Olympics football tournament Great Britain will be entering a team. This is a rare occasion, as all of the nations within the United Kingdom compete independently on the World stage and in Europe under FIFA and UEFA.
Guarantees have been given to the Olympic organisers that if a team of players from England, Scotland, Northern Ireland and Wales takes the field it will not in any way affect these countries status in the European Champions League, The European Cup or the World Cup. Despite the fact that many European nations have been complaining for many years about the United Kingdom competing as separate nations in football competitions.
It would appear that even though they have the word of the European and World governing bodies some of the nations are very wary of the consequences should one of their players represent Great Britain.
In fact so much so that the word is that they are putting pressure on the players likely to be selected to not play for Team GB, and there are even whisperings of players facing a ban from representing their country should they opt to play in the Olympics.
It would appear that pictures of Welshman Gareth Bale in a team GB shirt would indicate that he is more than happy to participate in the Olympic Games. Some may say what has he got to lose with Wales only every qualifying for one World Cup finals way back in 1958? Where incidentally they made the quarter finals and only lost 1-0 to eventual winners Brazil, and that was without John Charles!
There is now believed to be some friction over the choice of the coach, former England defender Stuart Pearce. Many believing that Ulsterman, and proven coach Martin O’Neill, would have been a better choice. O’Neill, who played with Nottingham Forest in their heyday, then has managed clubs successfully in both England and Scotland would appear to have the qualifications to please three of the four nations, but a decision has been made.
It will be interesting to see how this one plays out.