In England, a country hit almost as bad as Ireland by this tricky little Global recession we are all experiencing, a ‘Grade A’ nurse is paid between £10 and £12 thousand pounds a year.
The average English police officer earns £20 thousand. A teacher in England can be paid as little as £15 thousand.
Craig Bellamy will be paid £4.5 million this season by Manchester City. El Hadji Diouf will be paid just over £3 million for his services this season by Blackburn Rovers.
Why are we bringing all this up? Because it is pretty sickening to read about the disgraceful antics of players in the self acclaimed 'best league in the World', the English Premiere League, who are paid sums that those previously mentioned hard working people could never even dream of coming close to seeing in their infinitely more important lifetimes.
Bear in mind, this is coming from someone who invests considerably too much time and effort in and on sports, however there is no escaping at very least the question, why is the Grade A idiot El Hadji Diouf paid £60,000 a week when a Grade A nurse earns £192 for the same period?
If you think about it too much it would make your head spin, it is indeed a bewildering world we live in.
Does it appear we are unfairly picking on two individuals with bad boy tags? Well, last night Bellamy was arrested on assault charges (yes, again) while as recently as Saturday past, Diouf was embroiled in a particularly ugly incident in a cup match.
When it comes to El Hadji Diouf, where on earth do you start? This nasty piece of work is so past his 'sell by' date, it isn't even funny. Diouf is a big fan of spitting. In 2003 he spat at Celtic supporters in the stands. In 2004 he moved on to Middlesbrough fans, later that same year he spat at Portsmouth player Arjan de Zeeuw. You can probably see a pattern developing here.
There is no humour at all in his most recent incident.
On Saturday Blackburn beat Queens Park Rangers 1-0 in the English FA Cup. During the game QPR player Jamie Mackie suffered a horrific injury in a tackle with a Blackburn player. Players in the vicinity of the incident were visibly upset as Mackie lay writhing on the turf, clutching, as it turns out, a leg broken in two places.
Diouf's response? He approached the scene and gestured at the stricken players and shouted, loudly, ''expletive you and expletive your leg!''
The QPR players were so incensed that there was a fight after the match in the tunnel as they left the pitch. Blackburn players, Diouf's own team mate, have come forward anonymously and told journalists they think Diouf should be sold immediately. His own manager is conducting an internal inquiry on the incident.
The worst part of the story is after the match QPR players approached Diouf and told him that Mackie's leg was broken badly, in fairness to Diouf, in case he honestly thought Mackie was faking. Diouf’s response? Repeating word for word his earlier assessment of the situation; ''expletive you and expletive your leg!''
Craig Bellamy’s rap sheet reads like a Cincinnati Bengals player’s (in 2009/2010 there were ten, count them, ten Bengals players with police records of some description). Come to think of it, do the Bengals need a kicker in 2011? Bellamy could be a perfect fit.
In March 2004, he threw a chair at a Newcastle coach. In 2006 he was accused of assaulting two women in Cardiff. In 2007 Liverpool held an internal investigation after Bellamy assaulted team mate John Arne Riise with a golf club. In 2009 Bellamy attacked a pitch-invading football fan. Last night, Bellamy was arrested and bailed on an assault claim in Cardiff, in which two men suffered facial injuries.
So what do these two individuals, Bellamy and El Hadji Diouf have in common? Apart from the fact they are both basically scum-bags dressed in fancy, colourful uniforms? They are both disgustingly overpaid compared to the hard working people doing the really important day to day jobs that keep, in this case, England ticking. This all leads to the vexing, perplexing question, why on earth do we, as a society, allow this to happen? Why are professional athletes so wildly over paid in comparison to the men and women of our embattled and beleaguered public services?
That's a meaty, heavy question that needs further research, analysis and debate, and right now there's no time, as this writer feels oddly compelled to go spit at someone, perhaps while attacking them with a four iron.
Comments welcome! Free and open debate and communication are some of the most enjoyable aspects of life. Please leave a comment, disagreements welcome! If you disagree, debate your case by all means. However, anything rude, spiteful or any cowardly anonymous personal attacks will be not be tolerated and will be deleted.