Kevin Myers: Instead of sporting heroes we have witless slobs
Yes, it's perhaps a little too trite and easy to see the values of two civilisations being represented in the Champions League Final last Saturday night.
One consisted largely of Spaniards, or their cultural kin, with a manager who reflected their qualities of being athletic, young, intelligent and energetic. The other was Britannic, though consisting mostly of foreigners, with a few lumbering old British players with their socks round their ankles and an aged manager with a whiskey-face and no game plan.
The distance between the two teams was truly embarrassing: but does it reveal serious national differences? Or were these limited merely to the pitch on the day? Might not another match at another time produce different results? Well, we know the answers to these questions: they are Yes, No and No. As I've said before, there has been a collapse in the physical health of the British and Irish working classes, who are now as capable of producing footballers of world-class quality as they are of making interplanetary rockets.