Consigned to a physio’s bed, both English Premier League stars Thomas Vermaelen and Vincent Kompany are crossing their fingers and hoping that they will be fit for an upcoming friendly game against England at Wembley.
Asked by lurking reporters whether their lack of training and increase in medical attention was significant both professionals understandably wanted to change the subject. Vermaelen chose to reiterate how valuable Robin Van Persie was for his employers, Arsenal, whilst Kompany chose to fraternize with fans and well wishers.
The English journalists on the outskirts of the Belgian national side’s training camp in Liege were hoping to catch glimpses of Chelsea’s new signing, Eden Hazard, as well as a host of other Premier League stars.
They could not tear themselves away from Kompany, though, and with a last attempt aimed a barb at him, hoping he would be drawn in and made to give a self diagnosis. The Manchester City captain is a smart man, however, and with a look that said he hoped to play and beat England soon he merely stated that he wished them luck for the EUROs.
The problem for the intelligent defender is that this game is a one-off. Belgium are not off to the EUROs themselves. They therefore have to make do with playing the likes of England and watching from afar.
For some fans this can be tough. No one likes to be on the outside looking in. So a band of ingenious, soccer loving Belgians have clubbed together to offer their services to the highest bidder.
On eBay’s Belgian page there lies a unique mercenary offer, as several fans from the nation plan to go and noisily support a nation of the bidder’s choosing. All the proceeds will go to charity and everyone gets a fascinating experience out of it. Some FAs could probably do with considering this, at least.
The love of soccer can drive people to extremes, but for charity’s sake here is hoping the Belgians are at EURO 2012 in full voice. It would make a pretty funny story.