Why We Need To Change Our Attitude Towards Football

An air of disappointment, critical commentary, negative energy. TAZ THORNTON argues it’s time to change the support game.

Taz Thornton
9 min readAug 20, 2023

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I’VE just watched a team of awesome, elite athletes be awarded with silver medals on a global stage, before an audience of mIllions.

While I was filled with pride for our women – the ‘special team’ who’d taken us to the pinnacle of football glory for the first time since 1966 – my wife, her face streaked with tears, was sinking lower by the second.

Football has been my wife’s passion since being a small girl, and the beautiful game is seamlessly bound together with all kinds of childhood memories, hopes and dreams.

For so many of us, football is far more than a game – it’s life, love, everything. It carries with it so much unexpressed emotion, insecurities, stories about belief, hope, ability and loss.

And so, while Mary Earps collected her Golden Glove, people across social media were talking about how gutted they felt, complaining about the gameplay, picking apart ‘mistakes’ and bemoaning yet another England defeat.

Even the pundits were immediately pulling Sarina Wiegman’s decisions to pieces, and wondering how on earth Lucy Bronze had managed to make such a ‘mistake’ in the middle of the field.

I’m sure there were plenty of people slamming their pint glasses down on bars and proclaiming they knew it wasn’t our day the second that ball hit the crossbar.

People, this is not the way to support our national team.

It is not our job to feel gutted.

It is not in our remit to start picking away at professional athletes from our armchairs.

It is not a positive move to start asking what went wrong, instead of celebrating all that went right.

“Thousands of miles away from home, literally on the other side of the world, what our players need to feel from us is support.”

Thousands of miles away from home, literally on the other side of the world, what our…

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Taz Thornton

3 X TEDx speaker, bestselling author, award-winning confidence & visibility coach. Creator of the #UnleashYourAwesome empowerment & #ProjectArtemis programmes.