Chicharito’s late winner against Atletico Madrid to put Real Madrid in the Champions League semifinals was a special triumph for him after spending most of the season as the forgotten man. It moved him to tears. But Thierry Henry thinks he celebrated wrong.
In his new role as a pundit for Sky Sports, Henry said:
“I know he went on to celebrate alone and everything but he can thank Ronaldo. For me, he has to.
“That is, for me, Ronaldo’s goal. What I don’t like after [the goal] is it seems like he won the World Cup [with his celebration]. Turn around and celebrate with Ronaldo.”
Now, it was very easy to see that Chicharito did not purposefully avoid Ronaldo in that moment of overwhelming, incomprehensible joy. In his post-match interviews, he even credited Ronaldo’s assist and said that the goal belonged to the entire team, so he definitely wasn’t of the mind that it was all down to him and him alone.
All of that is irrelevant to Henry’s criticism, though. In fact, he was simply following the well established rules for footballers turned pundits when critiquing those who still play the game at the highest level. Namely, that everything they do is wrong and awful and ruining the sport.
That, of course, is an oversimplification. There is actually a list of questions that every footballer turned pundit asks themselves before deciding that something that a current player did is worthy of their public scorn and derision…
Question 1: Did this player just do something that makes me jealous and wish I was still doing it instead of them?
Yes — They are clearly only doing this to rub my face in that fact and must be taken down a peg for such a blatant show of disrespect.
No — I am still better than they are and they must be shamed for being out there instead of me.
Question 2: Did they just do something that I used to do when I played?!
Yes — They are not me, so they don’t get to do that!
No — My way was the right way, so they are wrong!!
Question 3: Did they just do something that no one could possibly find fault with?!
Yes — Then there was definitely something wrong with their celebration/boots/socks/face/level of respect.
No — Highlight that fault and how players only started doing this terrible thing after you retired.
Question 4: Why am I sitting here and talking to these idiots when I should still be out there playing and soaking in all the glory for myself and why can’t I be young forever and if I am so unhappy with my new station in life WHY CAN’T EVERYONE ELSE BE AS UNHAPPY AS ME TOO?!?!?!?!
Yes — EVERYTHING IS AWFUL!!!!!!!!
No — EVERYTHING IS AWFUL!!!!!!!
And that’s how your punditry sausage is made.