"Footballers, we're told, should be role models. A few months ago, Wayne Rooney swore into the camera during a live televised football match, and the world briefly reacted as though he'd burst into a toddler's birthday party and brutally molested a duckling. The general consensus was that he was being a bad role model to the nation's kiddywinks. Rubbish. He was being a brilliant role model. He'd just scored a hat-trick – thereby excelling in his chosen field – when a cameraman (who, by all accounts, wasn't supposed to be standing that close to the players) poked a lens in his fizzog. At which point Rooney demonstrated an entirely healthy instinctive disdain for the cameras, for the media, and ultimately for all the hoopla surrounding his primary task, which is kicking balls into nets. He'd just scored a goal and everything else could, quite literally, "fuck off". Good for him.
Conversely, anyone who took to the airwaves to huff and whine about Rooney being a poor "ambassador for the game" was an abysmal role model for children. Remember, kids – it's not how you play the game that matters, but how prosaically servile you are in front of the cameras."
By Charlie Brooker/ The Guardian /read more