Step on the Gaz
PUBLISHED: 12:59 15 October 2008 | UPDATED: 13:23 24 August 2010
I VE never known a footballer play better when he s being booed and I don t like to hear it – but I can understand why it happens sometimes. If someone s not trying and it s perfectly obvious that he isn t giving 100 per cent, then voicing your opinion is
I'VE never known a footballer play better when he's being booed and I don't like to hear it - but I can understand why it happens sometimes.
If someone's not trying and it's perfectly obvious that he isn't giving 100 per cent, then voicing your opinion is probably justified. But I don't think you can confuse that with a player making a genuine mistake.
The whole issue has come up again because Ashley Cole was booed at Wembley the other day and, without discussing that particular incident too much, I'd like to point out a couple of things.
Throughout my career, I've never come across any player who wasn't giving his all - especially in my time at QPR - and if that was the case, he'd be dug out in training anyway.
Sometimes you get people joining in with booing just because of peer pressure - and David Beckham was a classic example of that 10 years ago.
He got booed everywhere after his red card in the World Cup, but he matured quickly despite that. I bet none of the people who booed Beckham did it when his free-kick took England to another World Cup finals a few years later.
Anyway, after yet another round of internationals, we're back to the nitty-gritty of league games with Nottingham Forest and then Swansea.
Forest have got plenty of firepower with the likes of Rob Earnshaw, Nathan Tyson and Lee Martin, the boy from Man United, so it's surprising that they're down where they are.
I think Forest were one of the victims of the Premiership parachute system - they ended up paying big wages in League One and had to have a bit of a revamp before they were able to start moving up again.
QPR have been there too, so we can empathise with Forest and I'm sure they'll find their feet soon, but hopefully not before we've shown them what we can do.
It's a game where we have to be looking for three points, not that it's going to be any easier than Birmingham was - that's how close the league is and how I think it's going to be all season.
Swansea's going to be tough - they've turned a few teams over already and it's clear that they're not the Swansea of old.
This side get the ball down and play, they've got a good lad up front in Jason Scotland and the new stadium warrants Championship football.
Their manager Roberto Martinez was my room-mate when we played at Walsall a few years back and it looks like he's had a big influence on the game in south Wales.
I should be able to speak a bit more Spanish with him now than I did at Walsall - and hopefully it'll be to offer my commiserations after we take the three points!
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