Now that the Euro 2008 tournament has been consigned to the history books I honestly believe we ought to be talking about what is right about our game, not dissecting beliefs on what is wrong. Football you see is an eminently simple game. It's not about managers, coaches, legislators and administrators. It's about players, great goals, controversy and opinion.
The doom and gloom merchants that surround the game set my nerves on edge. I can't listen to them because they are ignoring all the good things in football. All of a sudden, it's seems as though the 'experts' have taken over. Once, the players did the talking - on the field. The Best's, the Moore's, the Cruyffs, the Maradona's have all been superseeded by theorists, technicians and just plain greed. Ronaldo has comes close to matching those legends recently, but his on-off move to Barcelona says it all.
It is of course ridiculous to believe that everything is right about the English game, but I believe anything in football can be put right by simple solutions. When things go wrong on the field you go back to fundamental issues. You start again, using a system that has been tried and tested for generations. You only have to look at Hereford United's reactions to the odd defeat last season. They proved time, and time again, that you can bounce back following a setback if you stick together, maintaining an inner belief in your principles.
Issues do not need clouding by coaches and theorists. Basically, at the very top level I don't think England are scoring enough goals these days. Tournament football has become tilted in favour of defences so we have got to condition everyone to think in terms of goals. There must be incentives - and I don't mean financial - to make every country rediscover goalscoring again. There must be points for the teams who score goals regularly.
I don't want to see radical changes in a football system that has stood the test of time so well. In all those long years, only a few alterations have been made to the Laws of the Game. It was in the 1920s when a major amendment to offside was made and it was no co-incidence that football's 'golden days' started immediately afterwards. Suddenly, the Dixie Dean's found that they had just a little bit more time in which to do things. Ability blossomed, the players with true skill exploited the extra room that they had been given.
I don't want to see the offside rule scrapped altogether because I think the effect would be too drastic - but I do want to see inforcement where an attacker when level is given the advantage. More goals equals more entertainment. More entertainment equals more fans. More fans equals more revenue. I feel that it would alter the whole character of the game so we must improve on assistant referees judgements in favour of the attacking side, and not the defence.
The insidious tackle from behind was outlawed years ago, and it was good to see a focus on the over the top 'studs flying' challenges last season.
Graham Turner sets high standards when it comes to discipline, and at international level it will be interesting to see if Fabio Capello can follow suit.
So, I say - stay positive about the English game. A restored sense of pride, coupled with solid self-belief and strong disciplines should be enough to ensure England once again start qualifying for tournaments....plus of course a few more goals will be needed along the way!