So England crashed out of the World Cup, to the surprise of no-one except those few million fans who seem to have a 44-year blind spot in their collective memory. And this is disgraceful and pathetic, and shows that England's footballers, and their coach, are a bunch of overpaid, overrated pillocks.
Well, fair enough. I can't see any way of arguing that anyone who earns that much isn't overpaid. It's not as if there were a critical shortage of applicants for their jobs.
But I can't help being struck by the contrast with the New Zealand story of the 2010 World Cup. The unfortunately named All Whites succeeded in getting draws in all three of their first-round games, failing to make it to the second round. And this is a national triumph, the best result ever for New Zealand football, and suddenly the All Whites are national heroes.
Such is the alchemy of "expectations", which can transform the same result into triumph or disaster.
And salaries, of course. We are very attached to the unfounded superstition that, if we pay more for certain jobs, we'll get better people. How's that working out?