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Scaredy Fat Cat

By Dawson Boyle :  08/02/2008 :  Comments (7) :
Is there anything wrong with the Premier League?s idea to play an international league game every year?

Keith Wyness doesn?t seem to think so. And his sentiments echo the CEO?s of the 20 other clubs, eager for a rigorous milking of this latest cash cow.

Although every ounce of my being detests the idea. I can understand his motivation. £5 million is too great a carrot to dismiss in a culture where the average club is only a bad season away from administration. However, I don?t believe his primary consideration was the untold riches the venture would bring.

The overriding emotion amongst Premier League clubs in the modern age is not so much greed, but fear: Fear of being left behind by their illustrious counterparts; Fear of missing the latest bandwagon; Fear of giving an inch to their rivals; Fear of failure. The frightened are vulnerable creatures. Leaving them susceptible to spurious characters and at the whim of their hair brained ideas to improve the ?marketability of the brand.?

This same fear encouraged our hapless neighbours over the park to forget their traditions in favour of a vacuous Mcfranchise. They cast envious glances at the teams above them and equated wealth with success. The problem however was that neither can function without the other. They borrowed the wealth and forgot to win anything.

The International round of games proposed by Richard Scudamore is a terrifying consequence of a feckless league. With most clubs operating at a loss how could they possibly turn down the opportunity to earn an easy £5 million? To opt out would be to offer their rivals an unprecedented advantage. As everybody has already discovered, if they don?t do it, Manchester United already have.

How did it come to this? When important decisions that frame the very foundations and integrity of our game are put to shareholders instead of the fans? What weapons do we have at our disposal except to give up, start our own team in some obscure league a la Wimbledon and treat our own footballing histories with the same contempt that Richard Scudamore and David Gill treat English football?s. Our seats would be filled soon enough. We would be the only losers.

All we can do is plea to the authorities not to toy with our sport. Go over their heads. Write letters to Parliament, to FIFA and UEFA. Banners and strikes won?t be worth a damn with the league?s shit scared mob. They?re too fearful of their foreign slumlords to care what some upstart fans might think and teams like Everton will be rightly too scared of losing ground. The only thing that could break the minds of these cowards is to appeal to their Mums and Dads. Legislation will put an end to this defamation of our game.

I?ve got a friend who has not missed a league game for 11 years. To keep this record intact he?s missed weddings, holidays and sacrificed virtually his entire wage packet in the process. Will he be expected to pay for a ticket to Dubai? Do season tickets entitle you to priority seats at Che stadium? Suddenly, all things considered, Portsmouth away doesn?t seem too far a distance to travel?

Reader Comments

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John Maxwell
1   Posted 08/02/2008 at 18:55:24

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Good read Dawson..

Like you say we cant afford to miss this boat..

I personally dont see the point of it apart from the obvious.. MONEY..

If it means a bigger fanbase and more exposure and revenue for the club then it will be a good thing..

Its just more Americanisation I’m afraid, like it it hate it, its the way we are heading..
David Torley
2   Posted 08/02/2008 at 21:37:20

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Apart from the fact that the smell of the stinking rich is making me retch, who on earth is going to watch Bolton v Reading in Dubai?
Keith Glazzard
3   Posted 08/02/2008 at 22:17:33

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Americanisation? Howdid it come to this? Perhaps it is surprising that anyone who has lived through the Thatcher years and in Blairsworld should be surprised - think the unthinkable they said, and this is merely the latest installment.

It’s a free market they say, and american owners with no other motivation than the maximization of profit are free to do what they will. Freedom for the pike means death for the minnows, or in this case, fuck you football fan, this is my franchise. I paid for it - well don’t quote me on that, I borrowed money to buy it and you’re paying that back.

Can I just throw in another old one? If you dine with the devil, use a long spoon, they say. In this case, if anyone contributes to Murdoch’s wealth and power in any way - subscription to Sky (ppv especially), buying his papers and even watching the match in the pub, they are fuelling this process.

Hard choices, and individual action in the end might add up to fuck all, but what has been called Americanisation is insidious. Personally I’ve never set foot in a MacDonalds, and never will. Has this got anything to do with football?

I think it has.
sean condon
4   Posted 08/02/2008 at 23:47:35

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Keith Glazzard- right on, my blue brother from another mother.
Matt Traynor
5   Posted 09/02/2008 at 01:08:26

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They’ve got a year to thrash out details and then finally vote for it.

I don’t like the idea in it’s current form. We’ve seen in recent years how close the end of the season can be, be it qualifying for Europe (or not) and in our case escaping from the bottom 3 in the last day.

Would be difficult to stomach if a mid season fixture against a top team in the searing heat of Dubai or Singapore was the difference.

Tim C will testify how diffiuclt the Aussie squad found it playing in Singapore and Asia for the AFC Asian Cup.

A lot can happen in a year - either the format becomes palatable, or the protests deafening. Interesting how managers, players were not consulted. I left out fans as clearly we are not part of the equation anymore.
Neil McKinney
6   Posted 09/02/2008 at 12:52:52

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What’s the point in the extra money? If all the teams get the extra cash, then exactly what advantage does it give anyone? More money comes in, more money goes out!

All the extra cash will end up in the same place it always does. In the pockets of players, staff, chairmen and investors. Meanwhile, your season ticket goes up every year under the pathetic claim of "if you want the best players..etc".

Whilst watching Sky Sports News yesterday I was first told of this EPL nonsense, followed by a piece on Bournmouth going into administration!!! All the money is at one end of football and they just want us to pump in more by whoring our domestic game out to people across the waves. It’s fucking incredible!

Wenger said if we don’t give all these fans over there competitive matches they’ll lose interest. WHY? They got interested in the first place without being able to go to competitve games! Most of the countries mentioned get to watch more live EPL footy than we do in this country! You can sign up to Sky, Setanta etc, but they sometimes get as many as three live games at 3pm on a Sat when we get none!

Greed, greed, greed, greed! I wonder if the fat bastards will ever pop!!
Chad Schofield
7   Posted 09/02/2008 at 17:22:41

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Don’t worry the successful teams would likely splinter off into Matthew Lovekin’s European Super League. Then of course the more successful teams there (Spanish, German, Englaish and Italian) will demnd a greater share of the money, before tying up a deal with the yanks... cue me taking the grand kids to West United versus FC East who play each other 6 times a week, but it’s OK because the squad size is so large that they rest each first team for three weeks if they chose to!

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