Straight from the heart with Ian Lucas: Football’s not coming home...

So the World Cup goes to Russia in 2018 and Qatar in 2022. What a sham.

I know this is last weeks news – but I am still fuming about it. Russia is bad enough – but Qatar?! You couldn’t make it up!

I am not joining in the with BBC apologists, who say that the BBC did a good job in exposing alleged corruption.

Of course if it exists it must be exposed – but why was it necessary to do it 3 days before the vote?

I believe the airing of the Panorama programme was ill advised especially when you consider that they could have used this information at anytime, but chose purposely to air it 3 days before the voting took place. The BBC should have special responsibilities given their unique funding model – and they should be speaking up for our country at every opportunity – not taking actions that jeopardise what is the best for us. It is called the BRITISH Broadcasting Corporation after all.

Anyway, that clearly wasn’t the only thing that shafted us.

To receive only 2 votes, one of which was the vote of the British delegate is truly shocking.

There is one more point I want to make on this, and it’s about the so-called ‘Three Lions’. David Cameron, Prince William and David Beckham. They went to Zurich and spent a lot of time lobbying, unproductively, for our interests.

There has been a lot of criticism over this – especially about Prince William. Lots of handwringing about whether it’s ‘appropriate’ for our future King to be involved at this level – particularly as he was there in the hall suffering the indignity of being filmed while the result went against us. Then later, he was interviewed on the TV in a way that the Queen never has been about our failure in going out in the first round.

I take a different view. In fact I think we should be very proud of our heir to the Throne. I thought the fact that he was there was fantastic. OK there is a certain indignity in not getting what we wanted – but the issue is not one for him worry about – the stain is on the entire bid process, and FIFA themselves.

I am reminded of the Roosevelt Quote “the credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood... who knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who neither know victory nor defeat.”

In other words, roll your sleeves up and get on with it. Constantly speak up for what you believe in, and if there are failures from time to time, better that than to think after the event “what difference could I have made if I’d got involved”.

I for one am very proud of him. And Cameron and Beckham for the same reason.

John Lennon – Can you believe it’s 30 years ago tomorrow (Wed) since the great man died? I was still in short trousers but can remember where I was (it was a school day – and loads of my mates were talking about it in the playground, some of them not even knowing who he was – I was shocked!) Where were you?

Have a great week friends!