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Do we expect too much integrity in our sports stars?

Krupa Thakrar Padhy Krupa Thakrar Padhy | 10:29 UK time, Monday, 6 September 2010

They're young, in the money and in the limelight. So should we really expect our sports stars to stay out of trouble?

English football star Wayne Rooney has found himself on the front pages (rather than the back pages) of the papers after allegations emerged of his sexual liaisons with a prostitute whilst his wife was pregnant. His publicist Max Clifford isn't too concerned.

"Man United fans love him. He could be a mass murderer as long as he's scoring goals....It's almost expected that if you are a Premier League football star you're going to be playing away...It's become a pantomime. It's a farce. It's as if it doesn't really matter."

And as the Pakistani cricket scandal continues to unfold, the ICC's CEO Haroon Lorgat has hinted at leniency for the youngest of the accused Mohammad Aamer, who is just 18.

"In my own honest personal view, yes, I think age would come into account in these matters. But that is something the independent tribunal will have to decide upon."

Former England cricket captain Geoff Boycott said on Monday that Pakistani cricket authorities never come down hard enough on corruption scandals.

"People might get suspended or banished from the team, but within a few months the regime changes, and they are back again, as if nothing happened."

The UK's Mirror writes that the scandalous sports star has become all too common,

'His (Wayne Rooney's) lack of moral boundaries - the apparent belief that wealth and fame protect him, that decent standards expected of others do not apply to him are - all too typical of the swaggering, greedy so-called stars who millions of young people look up to.'

But over on Euro sport, Emil Vassilyan comments

'If the coach decides to leave all "unfaithful" players out of the squad he may end up with a couple of them before the game, who will later be ashamed of the fact that they are not on the black list themselves...Capello should ignore all. Wayne should stay in the squad.'

We discussed some of these issues when the news emerged of Tiger Woods' infidelity and he's now back at work. Do we take back our sports stars too quickly? Or do we impose unattainable standards on them in the first place?


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