THEY have banned the booze on Wembley Way but they still have a boos problem in the stadium.
England’s supporters are rapidly becoming a national embarrassment following the latest outbreak of yob rule this week.
It might only have been a minority of the 73,000 crowd who jeered Harry Maguire during Tuesday’s 3-0 win against the Ivory Coast, but there were enough of them to infuriate boss Gareth Southgate.
Just as it was the minority of fans who turned last summer’s Euros final into a coke-fuelled riot, who booed national anthems of all our Euro opponents, who booed players taking the knee at Middlesbrough and vandalised Amsterdam not so very long ago.
So maybe it’s a good job that two of our next three games will be played behind closed doors to spare our reputation a further trashing.
Budapest’s Puskas Arena will be closed to the public for the start of England’s Nations League campaign due to racism and homophobia by the horrible Hungarians.
But Molineux will also be empty for England’s next home game against Italy in June as part of the punishment meted out by Uefa for last year’s Euros carnage.
The problem is that in between those two matches is a trip to the party city of Munich, when the travelling England supporters will be free to spend all day in the bierkellers and doubtless treat their hosts to a rendition of ‘Ten German bombers’.
Yet it’s not as if our fans behaving like dickheads is a new phenomenon.
In fact they were a lot, lot worse during the 1970s, 80s and 90s than they are now.
But that doesn’t excuse the recent misconduct which has led to Southgate wondering if players will be deterred from pulling on an England shirt because of the potential for abuse.
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Manchester United defender Maguire must feel like sticking two fingers up to his detractors after all he has done for his country over the past few years.
My memory might not be the greatest but in 42 games for England the only major Maguire error I can recall was his Nations League red card against Denmark 18 months ago.
Since that rare aberration, his only defeat in his 14 appearances came during the penalty shootout against Italy.
England have won 12 of those games, kept TEN clean sheets and Maguire has actually scored two more goals (six) than the entire team has conceded (four).
So it can’t possibly have been his international performances which promoted the Wembley boos on Tuesday evening.
And as I have never heard Maguire being abused by United fans despite his recent patchy club form, you have to wonder just who the hell it is who is so offended by his presence in the team.
It is to Southgate’s eternal credit that he has consistently refused to condemn the behaviour of rival fans when some of our own are just as bad.
The chief executive of Qatar 2022, Nasser Al Khater, has got the hump with the England boss for highlighting the disgraceful human rights record of the World Cup hosts.
He certainly has a point when he says: “No country is perfect and anyone claiming they are needs to really take a look at themselves.”
But Southgate has never tried to pretend that our supporters are as pure as the driven snow.
And, unlike Al Khater, he does not shy away from calling out his own country’s problems as well as those of other nations.
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AS Wayne Rooney declares his ambition to manage Manchester United, Louis van Gaal has warned fellow Dutchman Erik ten Hag to steer clear of Old Trafford.
Van Gaal has still got the hump over the way his time as United boss worked out and says: “Ten Hag must choose a football club and not a commercial club.”
And he probably has a point, because for the past few years it has seemed as though United are more interested in Twitter followers and shirt sales than actual trophies.
Few people will have had a better insight into what has gone wrong than Rooney, who was instrumental in Alex Ferguson’s glory years and an inside witness to the subsequent decline.
The club’s all-time record scorer might not be quite ready to take the reins at the biggest club in the country.
And he has more than enough on his plate right now trying to keep Derby out of the brown stuff.
But nobody at Pride Park could begrudge Rooney walking away in the summer when the team is inevitably relegated to League One.
And Ten Hag, or whoever else gets the poisoned United chalice, could do a lot worse than making Rooney assistant manager.