October 13th, 2008
04:19 PM ET

Jeer we go, jeer we go, jeer we go!

When a colleague offered me her spare tickets for the England v Kazakhstan game at Wembley stadium, I jumped at the chance to go to my first live football match. [cnn-photo-caption image=http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2008/images/10/13/art.cole.gi.jpg caption="Ashley Cole was booed by many of the 90,000-strong capacity crowd at Wembley."]

And I have to say, I thoroughly enjoyed every moment and my initial timid shouts of "Go on England," soon gave way to loud screams, one of which attracted a look of alarm from the young boy in front of me.

Soon I was leaping out of my seat in anticipation every time an England player approached the opposition's goalmouth.

Although, it did get a little frustrating in the first half as chance after chance was squandered and the half ended in a goalless draw.

Things obviously livened up in the second half with six goals in total, but most of the drama was happening off the pitch, with what seemed like half the crowd booing Chelsea player Ashley Cole, for his, admittedly schoolboy error that landed the Kazakhstan side their only goal.

Initially, I thought it was outrageous when the chorus of boos resounded around the 90,000 capacity stadium. But after the fourth or fifth time, it quickly became tiresome and - to me - unpatriotic.

It was left to a lone Cole supporter in our section to stand up and tell the crowd, in no uncertain terms, how they were unfit to clean Cole's boots etc. "You're all effing scum. He's worth more than all of you put together," he screamed, fury etched on his face.

That's probably true, they don't call him Cashley Cole for nothing!

After that, every time Cole touched the ball and was booed, he would get up and applaud him loudly.

Pretty soon, others in our section (and me) joined him in clapping Cole.

Unfortunately, we were drowned out by the unrelenting sound of booing reverberating around the stadium.

What do you think? Did Ashley Cole deserve to be booed by England fans?

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Filed under:  Football
soundoff (13 Responses)
  1. Jerry

    The constant booing – ok, the bloke made a mistake – so, you never have? – was typical of too many of England's negative, destructive 'supporters'. Just as in school, constant criticism doesn't breed success – the only thing that does that, is support.

    October 13, 2008 at 5:45 pm | Reply
  2. stuart

    Not a great performance by England, but as a Brit who has been playing the game since I was 4 or 5 years old at a reasonable standard I found the Ashley Cole err.... "pass" which led to the the Azer goal inexplicable. Coaches the world over at all levels will crucify a player at any age group or skill level for making a pass to no one, but to lob a a ball blind into your own goal area is worse than treason. Cole is supposedly a World Class player, well after that and other club performances he needs to re learn the basics. The booing he got was not a good thing to do, but the guy needs to get back to reality and do what he used to do well before being picked to represent his country again, Some humility and remembering your roots Ashley, too big for your boots since your big money transfer. Get a grip mate you can do it, but just take stock of where you are and how you got there.

    October 13, 2008 at 7:04 pm | Reply
  3. Cashley

    The boo boys will always be there. He does deserve a little bit of stick..but...not booing every time he touches the ball.

    Classless fans, IMHO. Get behind yer team.

    October 13, 2008 at 7:37 pm | Reply
  4. Mike Fowler

    There's background here that needs to be mentioned. Cole was the highly paid asset of a certain north London club, who had patiently brought him through their youth team, until he decided he could earn more money at every Englishman's least favourite team, Chelsea. His lack of loyalty and, possibly, the slightest tinge of jealousy about his unfeasibly hot wife (whom he cheated on!), mean people are generally looking for an excuse to vent their spleens in his direction. I honestly doubt he sheds too many tears as he reclines in his mansion, resting his feet on a huge stack of money.

    October 13, 2008 at 8:07 pm | Reply
  5. James Smith

    No player deserves to be disrespected by any fan. Well, perhaps if the fan had been a player and never ever made a mistake, he would have the right to criticize a current player.

    Boo-birds only illustrate that many sports fans are self-centered, unintelligent slobs. But then, that pretty well describes most of the human race, doesn't it?

    October 13, 2008 at 8:52 pm | Reply
  6. Groucho

    "What do you think? Did Ashley Cole deserve to be booed by England fans?"

    Who cares? It's a football game. Sometimes teams that don't deserve to win, win...

    Why worry about a whether a player being booed deserved it?

    October 13, 2008 at 10:26 pm | Reply
  7. svenjosefson

    Admittedly the booing is odd but I would characterize it this way: the English live with the notion that they have the best football league in the world (and they're probably right-for the moment anyway). With this comes the concept that in keeping with this their national team is supposed to be the best as well and blow everyone else out of the water. When they see that their players are often on par with other nations, they find this hard to swallow. International matches are notorious in that the unexpected tends to happen (England missing Euro 08?). The Swedes, who also live with some very high form of expectation, exhibit the same behavior at their home games. They follow their stars at the club level and demand the same type of performance on the international stage. It would be nice with realist fans who also realize that if they get behind the team they can do so much more than booing ever does. About the notion that it was unpatriotic: no I don't think so, this is sport and shouldn't be elevated to that level of importance that disapproving of team quality is somehow unpatriotic, its not surprising though that this would be the statement that makes its way out on CNN-seeing as its a US media and seems to love talking about patriotism. Maybe the players should wear pins on their shirts to prove they are patriots?

    October 13, 2008 at 10:47 pm | Reply
  8. Andy Mogg

    I'm sure a few boo's won't dent the multi-millionaire footballers ego too much.
    Did he ever find that £ 50k earring he left behind in some dressing room?

    October 14, 2008 at 3:27 am | Reply
  9. Ralph

    He was booed by frustrated racist white young men most probably full of pints of beer. Individuals that dropped off school in their teens and in their drunken imagination, strongly believe that planet Earth revolves around their local pubs. It's the reason why the world over they are known as hooligans.

    October 14, 2008 at 4:45 am | Reply
  10. Paul Denton

    The fans are entitled to say what they think, if Ashley cole feels hard done by the booing, I'll be happy to switch my life with his. He's got a grand life, and if the team plays rotten football, those bunch of multi-millionaires deserve criticism. It's the fans who are paying for the team, let them not forget that.

    October 14, 2008 at 4:56 am | Reply
  11. Sam in New Zealand

    Just because you have paid for your ticket and demand entertainment, shouldn't mean you get to deride another human being in such a way. It's like mass bullying. And normally that sort of intimidation in any other workplace would be illegal, but since its sport – you can do what you want.

    October 14, 2008 at 6:54 am | Reply
  12. Sid Hill, Starkville, Mississippi

    To James, Ralph & Sam: Hogwash! He (like all other professional athletes) is in the entertainment business. The fans support his lavish life style. If they are dissatisfied with his performance, they are perfectly entitled to vent their frustrations by booing. If he is too weak livered to take it, let him find another job (which most likely will be at a much reduced salary).

    October 17, 2008 at 9:06 pm | Reply
  13. Dale

    If you want to take the glory and the hero status when you do well, then you must also accept taking the stick and boo's when you do really bad.

    It's sport. Grow a back bone.

    October 19, 2008 at 1:22 am | Reply

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