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The impending decline of the PL?


heckel

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Does anyone else have the feeling that the last four years may have been the peak of the PL's forutnes and that we are about to see a swing back to the traditional power bases in Italy and Spain?

-Jose at Inter

-Fergie retiring within the next three years

-Ronaldo probably on his way

-Drogba and, perhaps, other of our stars on their way, with other clubs clinging tenaciously to their top players

-Fabregas no doubt returning to Spain soon with other top Arsenal players either on their way or mooted to be

-No obvious star manager that will attract big players to the Bridge or Old Trafford (thought let's see who we pick up)

-No sign that any of the big players in Spain or Italy are going to be making the move here

-Italy has now put the match-fixing scandals behind them and their top four look (Juve, the Milans, Roma) bullish again

-At this point, it seems that England's finest players are either at their peak or just past it with no obvious youngsters rising to take their place.

The one thing the PL has over rival leagues is financial muscle. Yet, despite the money being sloshed about it seems that the absolute top players still feel that Italy/Spain is the ultimate challenge.

Let's just hope that Essien and Cech remain on board, as I can see Inter and Barca particularly coming in to capitalize on these trends.

Thoughts?

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The shift as you're talking about is a natural process in football....no one league can dominate for a long period of time. There could be many reasons for the swings, but I feel it just gets boring...simple! The decline is bound to happen sooner rather than later....and I believe it's Italy next in line to dominate. My belief is surely biased due to Jose's arrival at Inter...but then people would agree with me on the point that the timing of PL's rise to the top of the pack coincides with Mourinho's arrival to England. Isn't it? Call me superstitious or an ardent fan! BackJose.gif

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new players and managers will always arrive.

the tv deals from sky mean the premiership will always be very strong.

Ah but if supporters are beng priced out of the grounds....

Atmospheres will deteriorate....

Making the TV spectacle less enticing.....

And less financially attractive....

So the money will start to dry....

And greedy b*stard clubs will crumble...

Because no-one was ever able to follow them as a kid...

And older fans felt betrayed....

So they'll all go to non-league teams...

Whose attendances will rise incredibly....

And whose atmospheres will be fantastic...

So TV will be interested in covering the matches...

And money will flood in....

Here's a quick glimpse of the make up of the EPL in 2020:

Welling Utd

FC United

AFC Wimbledon

Kingstonian etc etc..

You read it here first.

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new players and managers will always arrive.

the tv deals from sky mean the premiership will always be very strong.

Because no-one was ever able to follow them as a kid...

And older fans felt betrayed....

So they'll all go to non-league teams...

Whose attendances will rise incredibly....

And whose atmospheres will be fantastic...

So TV will be interested in covering the matches...

And money will flood in....

You were doing ok at first Mike, then it tailed of into a fantasy mate icon_lol.gif

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new players and managers will always arrive.

the tv deals from sky mean the premiership will always be very strong.

Ah but if supporters are beng priced out of the grounds....

Atmospheres will deteriorate....

Making the TV spectacle less enticing.....

And less financially attractive....

So the money will start to dry....

And greedy b*stard clubs will crumble...

Because no-one was ever able to follow them as a kid...

And older fans felt betrayed....

So they'll all go to non-league teams...

Whose attendances will rise incredibly....

And whose atmospheres will be fantastic...

So TV will be interested in covering the matches...

And money will flood in....

Here's a quick glimpse of the make up of the EPL in 2020:

Welling Utd

FC United

AFC Wimbledon

Kingstonian etc etc..

You read it here first.

won't happen though, will it? the average league attendance is going up, sadly there will always be people willing to pay stupid money, these non league sides have no chance. a nice thought, but no chance.

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new players and managers will always arrive.

the tv deals from sky mean the premiership will always be very strong.

Are you being deliberately tangential?

Yes the PL will still be wealthy, and will probably continue to be wealthy. But as Rahuldotchelsea has pointed out its seems that there's going to be a circular move away from the PL. And despite everything, it seems that the PL will never be the host league for the absolute top players. It's not something to shed tears over, just an observation. I don't expect that English sides are going to have it their way in the CL again. I would tip a Madrid/Inter final this coming season (in fact, I might just put some cash on that).

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new players and managers will always arrive.

the tv deals from sky mean the premiership will always be very strong.

Are you being deliberately tangential?

Yes the PL will still be wealthy, and will probably continue to be wealthy. But as Rahuldotchelsea has pointed out its seems that there's going to be a circular move away from the PL. And despite everything, it seems that the PL will never be the host league for the absolute top players. It's not something to shed tears over, just an observation. I don't expect that English sides are going to have it their way in the CL again. I would tip a Madrid/Inter final this coming season (in fact, I might just put some cash on that).

deliberately tangential? not really, just went for a simple answer.

but to give a more in depth answer:

I think that far from suggesting the league has peaked, I would say it remains on the incline ereand in jose's first year, but particularly his second the league was as weak as it had been for years- lots of bad sides. it does all come down to money in the end, and the figures for last season are telling, and perhaps worrying for the other leagues in europe- a big example is that the championship here generated as much cash as serie a last season! and this year we've had a renewed tv deal, where fulham can spend close to £30m in a season without much notice being taken.

but there are a few things I have to pick up on:

firstly, the spanish league is in bad shape, zaragoza relegated, barca and madrid healthy of course (but neither side would have gotten close to real madrid 5 years ago or barcelona 2 years ago, or even the valencia or deportivo sides that won the title after 2000). valencia are in trouble, they've started developing a new ground however the credit crunch stuff has meant they've struggled to sell the real estate the current mestalla is built on, so they've suddenly got to sell their top assets, villarreal are good, but only in a league this poor could they come second. atletico are finally promising to do something again, but even they won't hold onto their top assets if big money is offered, and torres is a good example of that. the league will improve next year, and if madrid can improve in the right areas and pep guardiola proves competent then barca should be stronger... but the league overall will be hurt by deportivo's continual malaise (and watch them sell coloccini), valencia's financial problems and zaragoza going back into the second division.

serie a, also, at the top there are lots of problems... I think your assessment of the top clubs is extremely optimistic, only inter are in the sort of shape that would be taken for granted in the premiership's top four at the moment. they have a huge squad, packed with talent. really they should have put this season's title away with total ease, and I expect jose to win it fairly easily, despite expected improvement from the others. milan have a lot of work to do, they've already started, but I'd be surprised if they managed to put together a proper squad capable of taking the title in one summer. juve did extremely well last season, they overachieved. not enough top quality there to be able to challenge inter, really, unless milan do something incredible, and/or jose gets it very wrong, the title race should be contested by one side. roma play the best stuff, with arguably the best manager in the league, but their parent company suffers from crippling debt, and a true title challenger would not sell chivu to the champions. would we step aside and let drogba go to man united? spalletti really is getting close to the maximum from what he has, and without funds it's difficult to see how muh closer they can get. god forbid totti get's an injury.

fergie's retirement doesn't mean a lot- as you've posted, it might mean jose returns to england... also, players in italy and spain are attracted to the clubs more than they are the coaches, and part of that is due to the higher turnover of coaches abroad. but while there are still a lot quality managers in italy, spain cannot hold a candle really- CL qualifying ramos lured away by a side near the relegation zone here, barca trying a totally untested manager, madrid have a coach who, despite two titles, still has question marks over his quality. valencia, again, in trouble.

in terms of top players leaving, what beckham, henry, van nistelrooy, vieira and perhaps lampard and drogba have in common is that they left, or would leave, having given their best years to the premiership, and while they leave, new players emerge to take the "stars of the league role", essien is young and yet to give his best, torres has come in and taken henry's role as the sort of "trophy striker" in the league, mascherano and tevez have been retained, and alonso would only go to madrid or juve (the classic top clubs in their respective leagues) having lost his form and his place at the fourth best side in the premiership. ballack turned down madrid to join us, and I'd be surprised to see fabregas go having signed an 8 year contract recently. and fabregas, along with ronaldo, mikel, lucas, terry, cech, anderson, nani, torres, modric etc all should have their peaks in front of them. it's not like in the other leagues the best players are younger than the premierships best, in fact, the opposite could be said.

I don't really see the idea that the "best" players not being willing to come here as something that rings true-I assume you are referring to kaka and messi specifically, but only we can afford them, and they are at bigger and more prestigious sides... actually real madrid could tempt kaka, but that's the same as they could ronaldo- they are the most successful club side in the world, and ronaldo possibly wanting to go is more an exception than the rule. as I mentioned, lamps has given his best to us, and perhaps drogba too, who A) is 30, B) is attracted by another european powerhouse, and C) claims to have never really enjoyed it here. I don't see it as a case of all the top players wanting to go abroad, and when you see spurs take a CL qualified manager and modric, city take the third biggest club in spains first choice left winger, portsmouth taking muntari from a side in the champions league in italy recently I think these things point to a league still on the incline.

next season I don't expect the champions league to be quite so one sided, but more because madrid, milan etc just can't be that poor again.

p.s. not deliberately trying to be contrarian, of course.

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I think that this year's Champion's League says a lot.

All four Premiership teams make it pretty easily into the quarter finals

3 out of 4 semifinalists are Premiership teams. 4th side knocked out by a Premiership club.

All Premiership final - and the top two teams in the Premiership need a penalty shootout to get a result.

That sounds to me like the top four in the Premiership at the moment are significatly better than the top four clubs in Italy, Spain, Germany or anywhere else.

And that is without Mourinho at Chelsea, Arsenal without Henry, Man U after their golden generation has declined, and a Liverpool side still a long way off the other three in quality.

And I don't think Fergie leaving will make any difference. Man United won't replace him with a muppet. When that job comes up, it will be one of (if not the) most sort after job in European football. Probably a lot more sort after than our current managerial vacancy under our current management, i'm sorry to say.

As far as any players leaving, I can't see Ronaldo, Drogba or anyone else having a major effect. The top four clubs still have a lot of money to throw around, and will always be able to attract quality players and quality managers.

At the end of the day, money is what drives these things, and the TV revenue that the Premiership generates is in a class above the Spanish or Italian Leagues produce. The top four will get richer. They might be joined by outside money being injected into clubs like Man City and QPR (whos new owners are richer than Roman - apparently).

That doesn't sound like a League in decline to me.

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