Put aside your natural hatred towards Gary Neville for a minute.
Now think of the reasons why you hate him. He is hard-working, committed, passionate
(and not afraid to show it!), has average ability but has been part of a Golden Era at Old Trafford. There has been the odd occasion when he has gone over the top,
but if that's what you remember Gary Neville by, you are doing a great servant of football grave injustice.
Gary Neville embodies those qualities one would expect in a virtuous, honorable footballer. Sadly, the aforementioned adjectives seem to have no place in football today. Gary Neville is a rare gem who has not been appreciated enough simply because of his no-nonsense, uncompromising approach.
When Wolves fans booed him at halftime, as he was about to replace Wes Brown, I was stunned. I can understand Liverpool fans, City fans, Arsenal fans (particularly those who expected great things of Jose Antonio Reyes) jeering him, but Wolves fans? Wolves haven't even been in the top division long enough for Gary Neville to get under their skin. Fighting in the position that they are, I can't help but think that Wolves could very much profit from the services of Gary Neville.
Football today is crying out to be released from the clutches of the power moguls. Gary Neville represents a footballer from the working class background. Hell, his agent is his Dad! At his core, Gary is a Manchester United fanatic who, as he himself admits,
if he wasn't playing for United, would be in the stands screaming himself hoarse. Although he does tend to do that anyway from the touchline!
He is past his best, no doubt. But like everything else about him, his exit will also be made with minimum fuss, and a lot of decency.
England fans, one question, World Cup final, with Henry running on the left wing for France. Who would you want as your England right back? If you think Glen Johnson, your worst nightmare will come to life...