Sam Allardyce has made it his mission to make the nation proud, as his new England era starts with a World Cup qualifier against mighty Slovakia this afternoon.
Allardyce has pledged to ‘get the basics right’ after the disappointment of Euro 2016, so high on the new manager’s list of priorities will be making sure everyone has remembered to go to the toilet before kick off.
The manager is also likely to focus on ensuring that his millionaire players know how to fasten their own shoe laces before the game and will be working hard to ensure that their shorts don’t fall down. And that they’ve all got a clean hanky.
Sources close to the England camp have confirmed that the manager has also shown the entire team a picture of a football and explained that they are supposed to kick it towards the big white stringy thing at the end of the rectangular grassy thing that they will be standing on. It is widely accepted in footballing circles that it was previous manager Roy Hodgson’s failure to establish the fundamental necessity of being able to kick balls into nets that led to England’s heroic thrashing by Iceland at the European Championships this summer.
Goalkeeper Joe Hart has received extra training and has been provided with a detailed diagram of the human body to ensure that, this time around, he will definitely be able to find his arse with both hands. Although no-one is holding their breath.
Speaking to the press yesterday Sam Allardyce said: ‘It’s all about what happens on the pitch on Sunday.’ No one had the heart to tell him that that is exactly what everybody is worried about.