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European Super League?


Would you be in favour of a Euro Super League  

27 members have voted

  1. 1.

    • Yes
    • No

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http://stateofthegame.co.uk/2006/09/19/ ... m-england/

September 19th, 2006 by Kieran Haines

With the allocation of four Champions League spots to English Premiership Clubs, it is perhaps not a surprise to see the gradual emergence of the ?top four?, as seen facing off together on Sky Sports Super Sunday yesterday. With the rest of the league largely forgotten most of England (and perhaps the world if TV statistics are to be believed) spent the afternoon watching Chelsea grind out a result against sorry Liverpool and Arsenal surprising an inform Manchester United.

English football is witnessing the formation of its own G-4. The party may be gate crashed from occasionally, not so long ago by Leeds United, Newcastle United and Everton yet these challenges were not sustained and future forays by teams such as Tottenham, Blackburn and Bolton are also likely to become One Season Wonders. Quite simply (we?ll call them the G-4) now have the financial strength to muscle all other teams out of the reckoning. The 04/05 Champions League saw 430million euros spread between the 32 group participants alone the winners Liverpool raking in 30million euros. Finish fifth and you may as well be last when it comes to significant financial benefits from UEFA.

Ok, this last statement may not be somewhat of an exaggeration and should a Russian millionaire take a fancy to a particular football club then the G-4 may be in for a shake-up. The possible take over of West Ham United by MSI for example one to watch out for. Yet I can?t help feeling that the polarisation of the English top flight is inevitable. On a regular jaunt around London Town I often believe I should be seeing a plethora of local club teams represented. Crystal Palace, Millwall, Leyton Orient, Charlton, Queens Park Ranges are all conspicuous by their absence instead replaced by Chelsea, Arsenal and even Liverpool and Manchester United. My two young cousins from Swindon Town, about 5-6 years of age, support Liverpool or Chelsea. How can the County Ground hope to capture the imagination of the local children such as them? Certainly not with Rocky the Robin.

Football is no longer about local representation and even in the lower leagues a club is rarely made up of lads from the surrounding area. It matters not that you support Arsenal but live in Swindon any more especially when the team is made up entirely of foreign players.

Why bother then with a domestic league. If Liverpool beat Arsenal it does not suggest scousers are any better at football than cockneys. It?s basically a victory for Spain over France. The G-14 should just get on with creating the European Super League that they have been itching for. Two divisions with promotion and relegation between the top teams on the continent leaving the rest of us to get on with the job of being passionate about a team with a realistic chance of success, or failure.

So what are the implications?

The Fans: First and foremost consideration should be the supporters and it can be argued that travelling Europe for away games would become a costly affair that alienates the true fan. Yeah right. The cost of a season ticket to one of the G-4 alienated their core support years ago and with the rise of low cost airlines such as EasyJet and Ryan Air a flight to Milan is as cheap as the train fair from London to Leeds. The football will also be worth the trip. A Chelsea supporting friend of mine last season bemoaned how boring it was now that they were always winning. A European league should spice up the competition somewhat and put paid to such predictability. It is possible however seasonal trips to the Nou Camp and San Siro are likely to diminish the occasion for supporters and players alike as it would become just another game. In addition will the prospect of a tie between Milan and Barcelona be such a mouth watering prospect if played every year? Given that the Real Madrid verses Barcelona still attracts a great appeal I suspect this will not be the case.

The Clubs: Managers are always complaining that they play too many games. With the Premier League now reduced to 16 that will no longer be the case! A fresh start will allow the domestic league organisers to put into practice the lessons learned from the mistake that was the Premier League. Prize money for example can be more evenly distributed so as to reduce the financial implications of not being in the top division and a greater control of TV Rights allocated to the governing body.

However what would be the governing factor to decide who becomes part the new Super League and will teams be able to enter once the competition has started? The 18 teams of the G-14 plus invite is the most likely (if unfair) solution.

The Players: May be the only ones not happy at the creation of the Super League. Except of course those who are able to play in it. For them the chance of playing the best in the world on a weekly basis and a salary with which can be bought any London mansion. For those not in the league salaries will become proportionate to a players actual worth as clubs make cuts due to reduced TV revenues. They may even have to get on with the business of being a professional football player rather than a diver/cheat/wannabe filmstar/fledgling author of bestselling dramas.

TV: Sky will obviously pay big money to televise the Super League and will immediately forget about the domestic leagues leading to fans actually having to leave the pub and walk down to the ground to watch their team play. Perhaps Sky could schedule the games to a time that is convenient for viewers to watch, say on Saturday nights when the BBC and ITV compete for the worst reality Pop Idol show between them.

Will it happen? Why not? Although any moves for its creation will be on a clearly be for financial not footballing reasons this will not necessarily be a bad thing. The G-14 have already discussed the possibility of setting up a Golden Competition a number of times ever since the Italians were unhappy with the Champions League in 1998. At this time UEFA simply enlarged the competition but they can not continue to do this. They further degrade other competitions in the processes. Those teams selected for the League can carry on with the business of generating large revenues, oh and playing some of the best football on offer of course. For the rest the task is to take football back to the ?good old days? when the FA Cup actually meant something and your team had a realistic chance of winning the League.

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No to a breakaway superleague, but I think that the whole European competition could do with a bit of a shakeup.

The current Champion's League setup is (a) too easy to get into (:woohoo: not producing "true" European Champions.

I think that more of a league-type setup would produce a more worthy winner. Maybe having 4 groups of 8 teams - each playing home and away. Then the top team in each group could play off for the title. I think this would produce a much more worthy winner.

Of course the problem for this is that it would require 17 match days instead of the current 13, and this would be pretty difficult to squeeze into an already bloated Premiership and Cup schedule.

Of course the answer to this is to cut out the Carling Cup (what is the point of that competition?) and to reduce the number of teams in the Premiership - down to 15 or 16.

This would also make the Premiership much more exciting, as there would be a lot less mid-table, nothing-to-play-for teams at the end of the season. If you weren't gunning for the title or a champion's league spot, you would be battling against relegation. I mean, who wants to watch Middlesborough vs. Man City on the last day of the Premiership?

Anyway, that is my two cents.

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I voted yes.

It will happen eventually anyway. We are too far down the road to turn back the clock.

If I had the choice of watching us play Charlton, Bolton, Middlesborough etc or Madrid, Milan & Barca then it is a no brainer.

You need the fear of losing to create some atmosphere in the ground. The atmosphere was fantastic on Sunday because there was a chance we might not win or even possibly lose and the enjoyment when we did win was all the greater.

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off the top of my head...

-no away fans

-no rivalry

-games to become 90% for tourists, like an attraction you go to when you're abroad

-consistent support to die out leading to games where no one cares who wins

-all supporters to be totally priced out

-season tickets only available in the form of boxes/corporate hospitality

-national leagues across europe to lose all credibility

-international football to be killed off as a result of an increasingly diminished pool of players to select

-plenty of clubs will fold

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A European super league would be the death of football as a passionate sport.

Fans of the elite clubs who are in the super league would be priced out of the game even more then they are now.

The atmosphere at games would be atrocious - just take a look at the atmosphere in many American Sports where there is little or no away support.

The clubs who don't qualify for the Super League would find there is even less money in the game for them then there is for the current Championship sides and the general interest in the lower leagues would deteriorate even more.

It is the worst thing I can imagine happening to football (other than Zlatan having children)

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I went yes, but I'd prefer to stay in the Premiership and the Champions League be a league of Champions (and maybe runners-up). 2 from each Nation, one league, play each other twice. Job done.

So you mean you'd prefer the super league to the current set up of the champions league? In other words you would rather currently be in a euro super league than in the CL/PL system?

ethical strategy you ever eaten a cake made entirely of icing? When I did the first mouthful was good but I ended up throwing up because it was too rich.

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Does anyone else find themselves staring at Heckles avatar for ages waiting for the little dude to do something different.

No to the European league by the way, if it happens I'm becoming a Southend supporter, not chance of them getting there is?

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I went yes, but I'd prefer to stay in the Premiership and the Champions League be a league of Champions (and maybe runners-up). 2 from each Nation, one league, play each other twice. Job done.

So you mean you'd prefer the super league to the current set up of the champions league? In other words you would rather currently be in a euro super league than in the CL/PL system?

ethical strategy you ever eaten a cake made entirely of icing? When I did the first mouthful was good but I ended up throwing up because it was too rich.

biggrin.gif I love icing!!

I can take your point though.

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