Claret&Hugh: ‘Paqueta and football should learn from the Rugby World Cup’

Our game has much to learn from Rugby Union

Kai Havertz (C) Lucas Paqueta (WHU) Noni Madueke (C) at the West Ham United v Chelsea EPL match, at the London Stadium, London, UK on February 11, 2023.

Don’t get me wrong, I absolutely love Lucas Paqueta and want him to stay with the Hammers for a very long time. However, I hope he is taking a look at the Rugby Union World Cup and learning a thing or two from blokes who are being hammered out of their heads, getting up and carrying on as if nothing has happened.

We are very quick to take a pop at players from other clubs – Jack Grealish anyone? – who play act, but sadly Lucas has become guilty of this as his Premier League career has developed with us. I haven’t watched any rugby for a long time until I saw Argentina beat Wales and the All Blacks turn over the Irish.

The players were taking hammering after hammering without a word of complaint or play acting. Such a change and let’s be frank about this, it made football look like a game for fairies. The referee is heard explaining every decision and is called ‘Sir’ by the players, there’s no VAR as the decisions are clearly shown.

All very old school; and there is nothing wrong with that – our game has much to learn from rugby union – that’s a certainty.

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