If you’ve taken even a brief glimpse in the tabloids this week, you’ll have seen the slightly unpleasant sight of Chelsea’s Frank Lampard frolicking on the beach and in the swimming pool on the Italian Riviera with breakfast TV reject, and current fiancé, Christine Bleakley.
Looking at photos of the couple in the dazzling Italian sun, compared to the sort of freak weather experienced in the Euros, last Friday, where an electric storm provided more entertainment than the France v Ukraine game, you could perhaps be forgiven for thinking Lampard got off lightly, this summer, when he picked up a pre-tournament injury.
Okay, so, in reality, there is little doubting the fact that Lampard would have savoured every moment of the Euros, especially since the Chelsea midfielder was reportedly keen to banish memories of his goal that wasn’t at the 2010 World Cup. However, was Lampard’s injury actually a good thing for England?
Let’s face facts: the partnership between Gerrard and Lamps in the middle of the park has never exactly been hailed as the next Xavi/Iniesta, especially by fans who placed a wager on England on Bet365, during the most recent World Cup.
Time and again, the duo have failed to replicate their club form on the international stage, with both players appearing to get in each other’s way. With Gerrard now playing alongside Parker, the Liverpool man has taken on the captain’s role admirably, perhaps knowing that, as the last bastion of the midfield old guard, he has everything to prove.
Furthermore, with another big name ruled out of contention, pre-tournament, the remaining England players have had to pull together, something that may have contributed to the improved spirit that the journos are reporting from the England camp.
Last, but certainly not least, it is surely never a bad thing for the England Chelsea contingent to be broken up slightly, and the less of an influence JT has on proceedings the better!
Football fans thinking of betting on the remaining games of Euro 2012 should keep an eye out for the Bet365 Ray Winstone video for the latest in-play betting odds on the tournament.