Mark van Bommel, the footballer, retires. Finally.


Peculiarly, Van Bommel played for all three – Barca, Bayern and Milan. The Dutchman, however, never featured when those clubs were showcasing spectacular, era-defining football. He was instead the awkward alternative they reluctantly turned to during more desperate, cynical moments. He’s the antithesis of proactive football.

Excellent article on van Bommel and what he brought to the sport; a must read.

I for one am not sorry to see him go. I usually don’t follow club football, but do regularly follow the big tournaments. Among all the stars that I remember from the last few tournaments, van Bommel is the only one I remember for all the wrong reasons.

Dutch football can be very beautiful, but not when van Bommel is on the field. He made football in general, and Dutch football in particular, dirty and cheap.

Whatever other talent he brought to the field was overshadowed by this facet, and I think football is more elegant without him.

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