Paul's last three columns can be read by clicking the following links:
|WTF is going on?||11th December|
|Reasons to be Positive||8th January|
This column is the sole opinion of the author and does not represent the opinion of Heaven Media Ltd or the opinion of any affiliates.
An unusual position to find myself in would be a suitable way of explaining my unprecedented predicament on Monday of this week. England football manager Fabio Capello said back in November of last year “if you don’t turn up I will blame you [the players], not Alex Ferguson”. Sir Alex isn’t foreign to this club-versus-country row though either, having many times argued about how his players are more important to the club than to England. They do, after all, pay the players wages. I remember numerous rows back in 2002 and come to think of it, there seems to have been many arguments down the years over the club-versus-country affair and it doesn’t go away as recent events have shown with Cesc Fabregas and Spain/Arsenal.
The thing is, I couldn’t give two stuffs about any of it, at least, until now. As many of you will know I dipped my dirty toes in the murky world of team management recently by accepting a position to run Team Versus, who are now with Team Coolermaster.
I read with great joy that Nations Cup by ClanBase (note the big C and big B ClanBase admins!) was returning for another season just a few days ago. I have always enjoyed the Nations Cup whether it be shout casting them or indeed playing for the UK team in days gone by (I played for 3 seasons running and captained the team for one, winning 3 bronzes). But not once did it strike me, despite being the manager of a highly skilled set of 5 Counter Strike Source players that I would find myself in the midst of a club-versus-country row.
The ClanBase NationsCup returns for its twelth season.
I was approached by the UK Counter-Strike: Source captain Dr. Gonzo about using HudzG which was flattering but slightly annoying as we have a very busy schedule of practice games and training ahead as we attempt to gel as a unit before the all important LAN Season kicks off. We plan on having a boot camp and attending plenty of LAN’s in the coming months, so its really important that we spend the time we have between now and mid February learning how to play positions together, calling and listening to strats, studying demos, working on alternatives and counter strats and finding some time to enjoy playing together as a team. All of that is going well you will be pleased to know and I would like to thank all the teams who have helped us practice including but not limited to those in Team ALTERNATE, ROCCAT and 4K recently.
With that in mind, I wasn’t wholly pleased at letting George play for the UK team and yes this makes me a meanie as well as totally unpatriotic but think about this for a second. TCM may not pay the players wages, but they do offer them many other things, one of which is LAN attendance and to do that we need to be playing well, practicing and putting the time in. Playing for the UK team won’t help any of our team do that and it only takes one of the 5 to be called up to the national team and the practice schedule will go out of the window.
You can call me selfish and I would agree, but why shouldn’t I be? My role is to protect the players, manage them, make sure they have everything they need to achieve our goals and ensure that they are practicing together to achieve results at LAN. Does playing in the UK team help them achieve that? I am going with a solid (and capitalised) “NO”.
So there I am, in a message with Richard discussing why I don’t want him to use my player for a national side that we both know would benefit from having George in it, rather than not. I`m not worried about upsetting Richard, he’s a big boy and I`m sure his ego can take the knock back, but there is a nagging feeling at the back of my mind that even despite the logic I have already explained, the players in TCM really should be allowed to go and play for their country.
Why not? I am the first to say I was extremely proud to represent my country when I played in the Nations Cup and let’s face it, that’s how it should be regardless of how big or small the competition is or indeed whatever the sport may be either. Hell, if I was good enough, Id have no problem with representing the National Mud Wrestling England team. Its one of the biggest honours you can have in your life surely?
I discussed with the team in true democratic fashion and was shot down using my own logic by my players. It would seem likely, without wishing to brag, that all 5 may well end up in their respective Nations teams, which makes my job (and theirs) even harder with potentially 3 different days of Nations Cup action ruining our practice regime. It’s going to take some management of course, but I would be not only very selfish but also very unsupportive of the initiative and time ClanBase and all of those involved in the Nations Cup have put in to it to make it what it is, if I refused passage in to the national teams.
The players of course want to play and I understand that, I did too and nothing would have stopped me back in the day. Things have changed of course since I played 5 or 6 years ago and it wouldn’t have bothered the clan had I decided to leave them to play in the Nations Cup if they had blocked me. I had little to lose back then with little to no costs covered going to LANs and certainly no salary. These days it’s a bit different, but still, I hope every team and manager comes forward and allows their players to enter and play for their country. Its what we used to call “bigger picture” Stuff.
I was extremely proud to represent my country when I played in the Nations Cup and let’s face it, that’s how it should be regardless of how big or small the competition is or indeed whatever the sport may be either.
I can however see this getting worse as more teams become more professional and include more disclaimers in contracts, but for now, let’s enjoy the best players playing together for their country and going head to head.
I don’t think it’s really about putting club before country or vice versa, it’s simply about supporting a great cup and a great idea. In these days of leagues folding and getting killed off, its surely down to all of us in our own little way to make sure we are doing our bit. When my players go out on to the virtual field of play to represent the UK or Norway or Sweden, I wont be sat there thinking “I wish he wasn’t playing in this and was practicing with out team” I will be just as proud of them as I was proud to have played for my country.
Good luck to everyone in the Nations Cup, I’ll be watching and who knows may be doing a little of that thing I used to do… What is it called again? Oh yeah, shout casting.
|Paul Chaloner // ReDeYe|
Posted 4 years ago: Thu, 15 Jan 2009 16:31:18 +0000
|North Am||May 24||China|
|CPH Wolv||16||-||3||EYES ON|
|More results ...|