England will today (December 1) find out who they will play in the World Cup 2018.
Russia is the destination for the World Cup, and the draw is always something I look forward to.
The possibilities are almost endless at this stage. Once the draw takes place, we know the dates that the games take place, and the bulk of my summer can be planned around where I will try to watch England play.
I’m finding it a bit annoying though how, these days, the organising bodies only seem interested in dragging them out for as long as possible, creating a massive amount of frustration.
No doubt I will get the same excitement before this World Cup, like I have done for every major tournament the Three Lions have played in since 1996, which was the first tournament I remember.
And no doubt, England will disappoint me, as they do all the time. England’s record in major tournaments is absolutely putrid. Only once have England reached a semi-final in a big tournament since we won the World Cup in 1966 and there is no real reason to think this will change in 2018.
We have a lack of senior players in the ranks, and the young players coming through simply aren’t being given enough game time for their clubs. It means that it is a complete unknown how well they will perform at big tournaments.
England’s shocking ability to take penalties will also be put to the test again. We live in an era where more games are tighter because the lesser nations are much better at organising themselves. This means a lot of knockout games go to penalties, and this is always where England are found wanting.
To be honest, there are a lot of reasons for people to not take interest in this World Cup.
But being a football fan is somehow different to anything else. No matter how bad we are, I will always be there to watch us, I will always get excited before the big games, and I will always be disappointed when things don’t work out for us.
Such is the nature of being a football fan.