How mercilessly the Obama 'A-team' - the 'cautious, tactical manager' and his French 'new-signs' - relegate the 'non-participants', the 'B-players', even those who so earnestly still want to be 'A-players'.
And how readily spectator-glazed journalists fascinate themselves in scoring all their performances: the 'star president', playing resolute 'striker for the world'; the 'self-injured' PM, as though he's failed some alpha fitness test; and, of course, for the Guardian, that dark 'Russian stopper', Putin, the obstructionist spoiler who seems intent only on ruining the whole 'noble game'.
And so, while our 'heroic away man' takes on the' home villain', Cameron must make do with playing in the 'reserves', keeping up some crowd attention with his apparent pledge to increase humanitarian help for Syria.
For the Guardian's political editor Patrick Wintour, it's still a laudable role, but, alas, not one that can raise him back up to the premiership, not one to match the glory days of former good 'ol boys:
"And what of Cameron? It was in St Petersburg, at an earlier G8 summit, that President George Bush famously greeted Tony Blair "Yo, Blair". After his ignominious and mishandled defeat in the Commons last week, relations between the current UK prime minister and US president are more strained. Cameron has been stripped of a central role at this summit, and heavily blames the politicking of Labour leader Ed Miliband. But Cameron has worked as hard as possible within the confines of the Commons vote to show his determination to shake the world out of its lethargy at what he regards as the biggest humanitarian crisis of this century.For the war-cheering Wintour, then, a 'match summary' of "noble cause" and commendable effort: Cameron 'playing for the jersey', even if he didn't, this time, share in the main spotlight.
At a session on Thursday night, including a discussion with Putin, Cameron pressed the case for more funding to help refugees, the need to create humanitarian routes so aid convoys can drive into Syria safely and the need for better chemical weapons protection for Syrians under attack from Assad. It is a noble cause to fight, even if it is not the central role he planned, standing shoulder to shoulder with Obama as he made the case for military action. (Italics added.)"
The stalwart Guardian and its senior defenders of power; as with Blair and Iraq, ever-reliable team-mates.
Still, there can be little doubting the UK's ongoing commitment to the main war game, the determination to remain in the big directors box, priorities ruthlessly enforced even as the citizen crowd boo and reject their warmongering play.
And while it may seem that, after all its loyal support in Iraq, Afghanistan and Libya, Britain is 'only as good as it's last game', America still knows that 'our' little country, clinging to that proud imperialist status, is ever on-side.
Doesn't it all say so much about the twisted psychology of the powerful, the preening of high ego, its media encouragement, and how that craving for top-league inclusion can drive the lust for executive-level violence?