Newcastle legend Shearer: England players fighting for relevance in sporting landscape
Newcastle United legend Alan Shearer admits the England national team must continue to battle for relevance in a crowded sports field. Shearer wrote in The Sun: "This weekend plenty of people will have been bemoaning the absence of the Premier League.
"The Champions League, for many, already dwarfs international competition.
"Our national players have had to compete with heroes from other sports of late from the Olympics to, more recently, the Ryder Cup.
"There is a danger that people can fall out of love with England.
"After all, we have not won anything for 46 years. I take my share of the blame for that - having played for England for eight years without bringing home any silverware. But for me, the importance of a strong national team remains as fierce as ever.
"Just look at the crowd the other night at Wembley for San Marino. We were playing the worst national team in world football and still did so in front of more than 85,000 people. No matter what you say about other sports, there is still nothing that galvanises the nation like a successful England team.
"Still, the players have to give the fans some hope, something to cling on to. A good performance in Poland will help right now."