It might be churlish of me to want to deny people their simple pleasures, but frankly I'm already sick to death of red-and-white painted faces, cars with flags, and pubs full of the stink of spilled lager, low-level racism ('faaack the Krauts') and testosterone. I don't give a flying fuck about Wayne Rooney's sore toe, or know or care who this new wunderkind is that they've just found. All I know is, the media will be full of nothing else for the next two months, then it'll all end in tears as England crash out of the tournament and there's a small riot somewhere in Baden Baden, as our own home-grown thugs (to quote Billy Bragg) "piss in their fountains to express our national pride".

With any luck, the Germans will win. That will be nice for the home crowd (I was happy for the French when they won at home and had big happy parties on the Champs-Elysées), and might shut the English football maniacs up for a bit.

God forbid we should win, we'd never hear the end of it.

[Two things to add to this since I wrote it. A) How dare they take Top Gear off the screen for 6 weeks just to make space for men kicking a ball around? Tcch. But B) at least I get lots of free time that many other people will be losing - see here. AMM, 7th June 2006]