Wednesday, April 01, 2009

What Were You Thinking?


Stephen Harper, comments after his photo-op with "Canadian" soccer star Owen Hargreaves:
“Owen Hargreaves is one of Canada’s most famous and accomplished international athletes,” Harper said in a release. “Given soccer’s massive worldwide appeal, it is certainly refreshing to note that one of the world’s brightest stars is Canadian. … Thank you, Owen, for all you have done to shine the international spotlight on Canadian soccer.”

Yes, thank you Owen for SNUBBING the Canadian soccer team, even though we BEGGED you to play for your country, instead choosing to play for ENGLAND. Given the fact the Conservatives have ads in the can, crticizing Ignatieff for excelling on the world stage, becoming a "national treasure" abroad, it's almost comical to see Harper so desperate for a photo-op at the G20, that he praises a guy who turned his back on his country. Don't get me wrong, Canada isn't exactly a soccer hotbed, but the only "spotlight" Hargreaves has put on our country, is that it's not worth playing for. Clearly, an offside moment for the Prime Minister.

13 comments:

WesternGrit said...

I do believe Hargreaves is from Calgary, and Harper was just stopping in on a family member of a supporter for the "photo op". Believe me, they didn't have to go out of their way to look for Hargreaves. Once again, they'll try to slander Iggy in "ads", while they play to their base...

Constant Vigilance said...

I used to be upset that Hargeaves didn't opt to play for Canada. But I have a recollection that he wasn't picked for a Canadian team at an earlier part of his career. I haven't been able to google a confirmation though. It is just something I read on a Herald article at the Soccer Centre. If I am correct, this does mitigate his decision to play for England somewhat. Playing for England, he has only a slightly better chance of winning a World Cup than Canada:}

Steve V said...

Slightly better ;)

northwestern_lad said...

I'm glad someone else touched this one. As a major footy fan, I just find it amazing that Mr. "The Opposition are Traitors" decided to have a photo op with the very guy who most Canadian soccer fans, like myself, consider to be a traitor.

As for what Constant said, it's true that he didn't get picked for a Canadian team, but it was a Under-17 team. Basically he snubbed Canada over a grudge over not making a team in his mid-teens. I'd hope that his patriotism would be enough to over look that, but oh well. It's true that he has a better chance of winning a World Cup in England, but Canada is never going to get to them and have a shot if selfish players like Hargreaves and Julian DeGuzman (who snubbed Canada for Holland). It's a real catch 22.

Either way, the whole ironic "traitor" angle just brought a smile to my face.

Mushroom said...

Steve,

I hope you change your mind somewhat. Football is an international sport. I, for one, will be happy if Giuseppe Rossi wins the World Cup for Italy in 2018. Much more so if your son makes the azzurri ;)

Constant Vigilance said...

NWL has a point to an extent. Hargeaves was under, I assume, pressure from his family to play for England.

I am proud of the development of both the Women's and Men's program. It would have been a big boost to have De Guzman and/or Hargreaves but I would rather go with players who have a lump in their throat as they pull on the Maple Leaf than ones who feel guilted into it.

Given a bit of success these home grown players will defy their parents and play for the good guys. With any justice, the trail to our first World Cup will include wins over England and Holland while those two cheer from the sidelines.

A guy can dream, can't he?

Now if you will excuse me, I have to take Occasional to her first try-out of the soccer season.

Mark Dowling said...

I don't think anyone even vaguely familiar with the clusterfuck that is the CSA can honestly blame him for picking England.

If Harper had snubbed Hargreaves you would have found a way to criticise that too. Let's get back to substantive criticism eh, not least because paying attention to photo-ops helps the PR peons justify putting on ever more of them.

Steve V said...

Mushroom

Viva!

RuralSandi said...

O/T but made me chuckle - a response on an American blog regarding photos of the G20 folks

"Harper has gray Blago Hair"

RuralSandi said...

Paul Wells, June07 - G8 Summit:

Anyway it was all so exciting the prime minister -- of Canada, entend -- scrummed. And he got a pretty good line off, about his reluctance to hang out with Bono:

"I’m a big U2 fan. Paul McCartney tried to call me once; some of you may know I’m an even bigger Beatles fan. But I gotta say that meeting celebrities isn’t, kind of, my shtick. That was the shtick of the previous guy."

Ted said...

I don't mind him stopping to take a picture with a great Canadian soccer player, especially a Canadian who has won some degree of accolades on the international scale.

What bugs me is that (a) the Conservatives were the on chose to make a big splash about this, arranged for the meeting, distributed the photo to the news agencies etc. and (b) they routinely snub anyone who earns accolades on the international scale especially in business, arts, culture, science, academia, politics, environmentalism, development, or well anything.

JimmE said...

Soccer? Soccer? Do people still play that game?

Not like it's a REAL sport!

8-?

http://www.rugbycanada.ca/

Mike said...

And then he missed the G20 family picture.

Those crazy Conservatives and their priorities...