Thursday, September 04, 2008

Jimmy Bullard Hopes to Get a Cap for England

FOX Sports has a story on Bullard. If Bullard gets a cap, it will be quite a jewel in his crown. At 29, Bullard is on the older side, but as Fox points out, nine years ago, Bullard was playing non-league football and working as a house painter with his father. Two years ago, Bullard suffered a horrific knee injury whilst playing for Fulham against Newcastle United. Five years ago that would have been a career ending injury.

Bullard came back to the Whites toward the end of last season and helped Fulham in the Great Escape. This year, Bullard has been in top form and playing well, which earned him a call from Fabio Capello.
Bullard admits he could have been playing golf at England's hotel retreat in Hertfordshire this Saturday had he not been preparing for Capello's first competitive match as England coach.

But he is determined to adopt his usual policy of "playing with a smile on my face", although that philosophy made by rudely shattered if England fail to deliver the goods in the Olympic Stadium.

Bullard said: "This Saturday I would have had a rest weekend, played a bit of golf and fishing, might have been here at the team hotel. I've played golf here a few times.

"But it is better being here wearing the 'three lions' on my tracksuit.

"I have always love watching the England games - at my mum and dad's house, my house. Now it is great to be a part of it.

"Has it been frustrated watching England? You have frustrating times in all kinds of sports, especially football. The pressure is here for everyone to see.

"As a fan it is totally different coming in to being involved. But I was not nervous, I was anxious to get out there on the pitch. I feel comfortable on the pitch, playing football is where I feel my most comfortable."

Bullard admitted: "I hope I am liked. I play my football with a smile on my face. That is how I play my best football. I can't get too uptight.

"I just go out there and enjoy my football and enjoy life. It is as simple as I can put it. It is great for the fans to like you. That is what you aim for. It is good. I'll always play with a smile on my face."
Ah, if only all players playing for their nation would have as much of a positive outlook as Bullard. I have no doubt that if he gets the call to step on the pitch Bullard will give 100% every minute, it is just his style of play. Maybe having a non-prima donna in the dressing room will be enough for England to start snapping out of their collective funk.

I don't think Bullard will start against Andorra, but I do hope he gets a run out, even if only for 15 or 20 minutes.

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