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Thread: To super league or to not super league ...

  1. #61
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    I think it's fascinating that this appears to be the straw that broke the camels back for so many. You've got Sky (in typically sensationalized ratings friendly fashion) taking up the position of defenders of the soul of football against evil corporate greed! Sky and the Premier League, who have gutted fan culture, priced out vast numbers of working class fans and turned football into a televised game of monopoly, are now rowing in behind "Football is for the Fans" campaigns and claiming to be outraged because the proposals say the quiet part out loud by referring to non-TV fans as 'heritage fans'. An Arsenal season ticket costs over 2k sterling a year. You can get a Bayern Munich season ticket for as little as €150. Where is the all the "football is for the fans" outrage about that?

    Ultimately this is a ****ing contest between massive greedy corporations all trying to protect and pursue their own financial interests. Listening to Sky Sports lecturing about the need to preserve the soul and integrity of the sport is stomach churning.

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  3. #62
    Seasoned Pro Kingdom's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TonyD View Post
    Just on this. Struck me earlier that if it were to go the legal route and clubs challenge any exclusions from their own leagues, presumably they’d be using eu competition law ? (A la the Bosman case for example) But guess who is not subject to EU law anymore, thanks to Brexit

    I really hope, if it happens, that the National FAs have the balls to throw those clubs out of their leagues. I’ve heard a lot of comment this morning that the league needs the clubs more than the clubs need the league. I’m not so sure. How will Arsenal or Spurs fans feel after a few seasons finishing in or around the bottom of this new league, with no other trophies to play for ? Even if they do better than that, and say, finish 5th or 6th, well really, who cares.

    As a Pats supporter with only a passing interest in the English game now, I can’t say that it exercises me greatly. Our local teams will in all likelihood remain where they always were, but at least I can have realistic dreams of league titles and FAI cups (well one every fifty years at least )
    The SL proposal isn't being discussed by MS this week, interesting to see if it comes up next week, as there's a Ministers for Sport Council meeting coming up shortly (2 weeks). FT Brussels saying this morning that the Commission has no interest in getting involved, leaving it to the Sports Authorities to resolve, and quoted a sports lawyer citing a ECJ case for two Dutch speed skaters as an example for the SL clubs (and importantly, their players) to latch on to, to avoid sanctions.
    That's what I love about these high school girls, man. I get older, they stay the same age

  4. #63
    Seasoned Pro jbyrne's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kiki Balboa View Post
    To be honest, I think a bigger problem is that the ESL just seems boring. So far only 12 teams. Lots of meaningless games to qualify for the knockout round. Then you are meant to are about the final, which you never heard of before? Where will it be in 10 years time. It just seems dull. Who would want to watch it once the novelty wears off.

    Even the money within the tournament wont be evenly spread, and there are no mechinisms to ensure equality, so no doubt you will have 3 out 4 same teams in the semis every years.
    exactly. just a longer drawn out version of the very drab champions league group stages. i have not really sat down to watch a champions league match before the last 8 in a good few years.

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    Reserves blueblood's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kiki Balboa View Post
    6 nations is a fairly perfect tournament. Nations (ie everybody can get behind) playing against close rivals in Feburary (normally a lull in every other sport). Only 5 games, so every game matters. Can easily sell out stadiums because its only two or three games a year (short supply)

    Asking anymore, people would get bored.
    But with only 5 games you could potentially have nothing to play for after only 2 games but your probably right in the main difference being the national team, but would there be much interest from tv supporters if ireland rugby continually finishing around the bottom of the table? I suppose a lot is to do wit marketing etc

  6. #65
    Seasoned Pro El-Pietro's Avatar
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    This is the obvious eventual outcome football has been heading to for the past few decades. Every few years changes are made that concentrate more power and money in the hands of a select few. This leads to massive disparity in quality between the top teams/leagues and everyone else. Then you get people/teams complaining about boring group stage games in the Champions League, or predictable outcomes from the groups themselves with maybe one "surprise" team qualifying for the knock out stages each year. To rectify this they make changes that results in even further concentration of money and power in a smaller group of hands and the problem is exacerbated further. How anyone could look at the Premier League and La Liga and think... yeah La Liga is great, we want the same teams to win each year, that will get fans interested is beyond me. The one thing the Premier League did right was dividing up prize money/tv money more evenly than other leagues, which has allowed for the likes of Leicester or Wolves, or Fulham to go on fairytale runs. I'm not naieve enough to think Leicester or Wolves are "good guys" or anything, just that those runs by unfancied teams are what keep people interested, even if more often than not its Liverpool, or Chelsea or one of the Manchester clubs winning it all, or Bayern/Madrid/Barcelona/Juventus. I'm sick and tired of it. I'm no fan of UEFA/FIFA or the Premier League/FA but I think the various associations need to have backbone here. I see three possible outcomes from this process:

    1. The associations negotiate with these teams, give them more concessions, exacerbating the problem and in a few years we are back at the same position. The proposal will look a little different, maybe a different set of clubs but its the same core plan. Those clubs will have even more leverage next time though.

    2. They allow these clubs to stay in their respective domestic leagues while playing in the Super League. Thats the end of the Champions League as it is effective immediately which has severe knock on issues for leagues like our own, no one is funding Dundalk or Rovers, or Tranmere or Celta Vigo if there isn't a chance at a promised land out there to hope for. A few years down the line the Super League is established and has prestige, and these clubs come back looking for more concessions or they threaten to leave their leagues, leauges they are dominating financially anyway. Reduced fixtures etc, more prize money and control for the top teams. Eventually after bleeding their domestic leagues dry they completely separate into an expanded global league and the Premier League, La Liga, Serie A etc are completely devalued.

    3. Have some backbone, kick them out now and take the hit financially, but leave those clubs to fend for themselves. Maybe they make a go of it, or maybe in a few years people get sick of the same 12-15 teams playing each other every week with no relegation meaning the likes of Arsenal and Spurs have no need to fight competitively as they rake in the cash - plenty of examples of this in the US, teams like the Pittsburgh Pirates make a tonne of money despite being a terrible team for a decade. If they come crawling back, they can start at the bottom of their equivalent pyramids.

    Also, once they kick the traitor teams out - work on fixing European competition. Undo all the horrible work done to it in order to make the rich clubs richer. European cup goes back to Champions only. No qualifying, no seeding, no groups. Home and Away legs, straight knock out all the way until the semi final. Give me PSG vs Bayern Munich and Linfield vs Steaua Bucherest in the same round. Make the English champions travel to San Marino or Luxembourg in the first round if they have to. Bring back the Cup Winners Cup, and you can put all the other decent but not champion teams in the Europa League, with qualification if needed.
    Will Liverpool, Arsenal, Athletico fans be excited about a team that loses as many games as they win in a season? Its once thing dominating domestically most years and getting knocked out in the quarter final of the Champions League by Bayern or Barcelona, but if they don't have a domestic league and only get to play these other elite teams mathematically these teams can't all win enough games to keep their fans happy. Do they want to be small fish in this new pond?

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  8. #66
    Seasoned Pro NeverFeltBetter's Avatar
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    One thing UEFA won't be doing is downsizing the Champions League. The same day this was announced they increased the size of the group stage.

    It strikes me a bit like the Club World Cup which, despite decent viewing figures as I understand it, has never turned into the red-hot must-win thing that FIFA wanted it to be. 20 years after it was first introduced, it's still struggling to really be as big a deal as the creators wanted it to be. How will the ESL do things differently? The marketing campaign will probably be enormous I suppose.

    I wouldn't be so quick to use the constant similarity of the opposition as a reason for why it might fail. They might only be playing each other once or twice a year, and isn't that basically what a league is?

    The real comparison is American sports, and specifically the NFL. That has more teams so it's automatically got more variety, but it does have a system where you aren't playing the exact same sides every season, just your divisional competitors. Something like that could easily be brought in to this venture.

    Could be looking at a lot more too, if FIFA and UEFA aren't sanctioning anything. Stuff that springs to mind is shorter games with clock stopping, advertising during play, more VAR-related stuff, mechanisms to eliminate draws, sinbins.

    Who are the other three teams allegedly to become "founders" does anyone think? German clubs are out, not sure more EPL teams would join, though who knows. PSG appear obvious, but have been silent on the matter. Zenit maybe? Roma, Ajax? Could they look further afield, to an American side, or Qatari or Chinese?
    Author of Never Felt Better (History, Film Reviews).

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    Quote Originally Posted by NeverFeltBetter View Post
    Who are the other three teams allegedly to become "founders" does anyone think? German clubs are out, not sure more EPL teams would join, though who knows. PSG appear obvious, but have been silent on the matter. Zenit maybe? Roma, Ajax? Could they look further afield, to an American side, or Qatari or Chinese?
    According to German media, invitations are to be extended to PSG, Bayern and Dortmund. But Bayern and Dortmund don't seem to be interested. Maybe it's wise for them to watch on from the sidelines, and if the ESL blows up in the face of the 12 clubs, Bayern, Dortmund and PSG might be the ones benefitting from the fallout by being the biggest clubs left in the CL.

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    Seasoned Pro jbyrne's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sonny View Post
    Listening to Sky Sports lecturing about the need to preserve the soul and integrity of the sport is stomach churning.
    you don't have to look any further than skys transfer season and deadline day coverage on SSN for the grotesque nature of what its all become.
    bragging about the ridiculous amounts that the clubs have spent on transfers during a particular transfer season as if its something every sport should be proud of

  11. #69
    Seasoned Pro NeverFeltBetter's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by sidewayspasser View Post
    According to German media, invitations are to be extended to PSG, Bayern and Dortmund. But Bayern and Dortmund don't seem to be interested. Maybe it's wise for them to watch on from the sidelines, and if the ESL blows up in the face of the 12 clubs, Bayern, Dortmund and PSG might be the ones benefitting from the fallout by being the biggest clubs left in the CL.
    Given the nature of fan ownership in the Bundesliga, it's hard to foresee any of their clubs accepting entry unless the Champions League totally collapses. Even RB Leipzig have come out strongly against the idea.
    Author of Never Felt Better (History, Film Reviews).

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    Seasoned Pro sbgawa's Avatar
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    i would say geographic spread will be a factor, team from Poland , Portugal , Scotland ??, Holland Celtic and Rangers have been trying to leave for years.

  13. #71
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    Quote Originally Posted by jbyrne View Post
    you don't have to look any further than skys transfer season and deadline day coverage on SSN for the grotesque nature of what its all become.
    bragging about the ridiculous amounts that the clubs have spent on transfers during a particular transfer season as if its something every sport should be proud of
    Yeah grotesque is the word for it but ultimately it's all part of the pantomime. 99% of e-fans, barstoolers and armchair fans watch football as a tv show not as a sport. Obviously this Super League would be another nail in the coffin, but I really don't see it as some sort of radical break from the current state of affairs. European club football is already way down the rabbit hole. As dismal as it is to be getting ****ed on trying to watch 3/4s of a game from a crumbling away terrace in Oriel with nowhere to take a ****, it's infinitely preferable to the alternative imo.

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  15. #72
    Seasoned Pro NeverFeltBetter's Avatar
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    Porto have already said they aren't interested. Benfica maybe? A team from the Netherlands would probably be a high value target alright. Not so sure about the Old Firm myself, I think we (the Irish I mean) tend to overestimate their importance to the footballing landscape. I'm thinking somewhere like Red Bull Salzburg or Dynamo Kiev would be more likely to be invited.
    Author of Never Felt Better (History, Film Reviews).

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    Quote Originally Posted by NeverFeltBetter View Post
    Porto have already said they aren't interested. Benfica maybe? A team from the Netherlands would probably be a high value target alright. Not so sure about the Old Firm myself, I think we (the Irish I mean) tend to overestimate their importance to the footballing landscape. I'm thinking somewhere like Red Bull Salzburg or Dynamo Kiev would be more likely to be invited.
    I think Celtic have the potential to punch with some of the big clubs but are currently severely restricted by their operating environment. A big historic club with a 60000 capacity stadium with one of the best atmospheres in European football and massive potential to plug into plastic paddies the world over. It would seem a perfect fit for a new franchise driven soccer conference!!

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  18. #74
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sonny View Post
    I think Celtic have the potential to punch with some of the big clubs but are currently severely restricted by their operating environment. A big historic club with a 60000 capacity stadium with one of the best atmospheres in European football and massive potential to plug into plastic paddies the world over. It would seem a perfect fit for a new franchise driven soccer conference!!
    Reductio ad absurdum... I hope that you are either Dermot Desmond or you are joking.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Dalymountrower View Post
    Reductio ad absurdum... I hope that you are either Dermot Desmond or you are joking.
    There is absolutely no way Desmond would be thinking that ambitiously about Celtic!

    I'm half-joking obviously. Celtic obviously won't be anywhere near this. But if a club like Spurs can find themselves among the global elite of football clubs simply by virtue of billionaire ownership and truckloads of EPL tv money there is no reason Celtic couldn't do so also in the right circumstances. Only one of those clubs have won a European Cup!

  20. #76
    Seasoned Pro NeverFeltBetter's Avatar
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    PSG's President with a pretty strong statement against this idea now.
    Author of Never Felt Better (History, Film Reviews).

  21. #77
    Biased against YOUR club pineapple stu's Avatar
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    You wonder what their angle is. It almost certainly isn't this -

    As a football club, we are a family and a community; whose fabric is our fans - I believe we shouldn’t forget this.
    - even though that's what they're saying.

    Meanwhile, Florentino Perez is quoted saying -

    We are doing this to save football at this critical moment
    It's remarkable the amount of guff that some people will believe (and I'm fairly sure there's millions of Real fans around the world who'll lap up those words)

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    Seasoned Pro NeverFeltBetter's Avatar
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    Very interestingly, Amazon have made a very tepid comment on the plans, having previously been mentioned as a company that were approached over broadcast rights:

    Amazon Prime Video said in a statement it had not been involved in any discussions regarding the Super League."Amazon Prime Video understands and shares the concerns raised by football fans regarding a breakaway Super League," a statement on its official Twitter account read.
    "We believe part of the drama and beauty of European football comes from the ability of any club to achieve success through their performances on the pitch."
    Author of Never Felt Better (History, Film Reviews).

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    The English clubs involved are no longer interested in terroir and will leave the UK if the Tories try and stop them and I don't think they will, I mean this kind of stuff is the Conservative and Unionist Parties raison d'etre. I wouldn't be surprised if some of Johnson's sleazy friends in finance like Crispin Odious are involved. The Johnson regime will make all the right noises that a populist administration ought to, but it will most probably end nowhere. You have to assume giving the parties involved in promoting the ESL that everything is legally watertight as far as the founding clubs are concerned.

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    "Bringing the game into disrepute" covers everything though?

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