In what might be perhaps his 2nd toughest decision-making process after that of picking the final 23 bound for South Africa, Fabio Capello has been mulling over another crucial list: the England shopping list.
Tesco, the official supermarket of the England team — yet more proof that soccer is licensed to death these days — has unveiled the range of foods Capello would like to pack for his squad before they embark on that magical World Cup journey. And what a list it is. There’s edible stuff on there! Some of it delicious!
Take it away, Tesco nutritionist (really?) Laura Street: “Sports nutrition has changed since England won the World Cup in 1966 when no attention was particularly paid to footballers’ diets.”
This much is true. Journalists were much more interested in which player was having sex with which popular model (some things never change).
“Carbohydrates such as arborio risotto and sushi rice alongside high sugar foods such as jams and dried apricots are on the list as they provide fuel for the body and help maintain blood sugar levels throughout the 90 minutes on the pitch. Pine nuts and olive oil provide mono-unsaturated fats which help support a healthy heart and herbal teas are a great way to maintain hydration levels.”
It all sounds very modern and Wenger-esque, and is sure to evoke all kinds of bleary reportage of how England players used to eat pie and chips every day, or how Wayne Rooney loves snacks. Imagine that! The kid likes a bag of potato chips sometimes!
To recap: rice, nuts, dried fruit, and oils. Where’s the beef?!?!
Other items mentioned in the article include seaweed, Tabasco, English mustard, herbal tea, and organic chocolate, none of which sounds especially filling. But hey, when you’re destined for a quarter-final exit like so many England teams before you, there is solace to be taken in the fact that you’ll be out there for 2 1/2 weeks before returning home to a heaving spread of Yorkshire puddings, Toad in the Hole, roast beef, and buckets full of gravy.
I do applaud the foresight, though; anything to avoid a Spurs-esque lasagna incident after eating the catering.