Is Booing Really The Answer?

October 11, 2006

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I recently happened upon this article by Keith Brookman in the match day programme. It is a subject that has been at the base of many a debate and I thought it was worthy of wider coverage. I hope Keith does not mind.

In Monday’s edition of the Times, I came across this article by former Millwall and Chelsea player Tony Cascarino. Some of the things he had to say were quite pertinent, given some of the abuse our players received from our own supporters last Saturday.

Players will tell you that two of the worst experiences they could have are being booed by their own fans and being injured. It is different if the abuse is coming from the away supporters – you expect that and it can often motivate you.”

Cascarino went on to explain that he was booed by his own fans quite a lot when playing for Celtic and Villa and all the time during his spell at Stamford Bridge. Even a goal on his debut didn’t silence them! The abuse continued and the memory will stay with me for the rest of my life. It did not make me play any better. I thought about it during matches and during countless sleepless nights. You can feel the rumblings from the stands, you know if you miss two chances then fluff a third, the fans will go crazy.”

“Fans should realise that it damages the team they claim to love. Oh, and it is pointless. No manager can afford to carry a passenger for long. Bad players do not last, whatever the fans say about them. The abuse just turns the painful time into an agonising one.”

Wise words from one who has suffered at the hands of his own team’s fans who just booed. Still fancy booing?

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