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The Revolution Will Not Be Televised

"Make money your God and it will plague you like the devil." Henry Fielding.

By now you have all heard the ludicrous suggestion of the Premier League to consider staging domestic fixtures abroad once a season (spot the oxymoron there). Others have already touched upon the obvious folly it invites to the integrity of the competition. It is safe to garner the immense sense of dissatisfaction this has provoked from the majority of supporters, both UK based and from foreign shores. What I want to get across in this meditation on this proposal (which is as much a way of getting to grips with the whole thing myself as it is a call to arms), is just how dangerous this suggestion is. Not to us, the supporters. My personal slant is that if the Premier League wishes to sanction this move, they do so without me. This will not affect my person in the slightest; I will not be traipsing across the continent to watch Arsenal play Derby County. Simply, I will not be watching or following Arsenal or any Premiership club at all, whether on my doorstep or for any "Thriller in Manilla." If Scudamore and his chums want to exclude me and my ilk from a product that I and others like me have been instrumental in building, then they can do as they will. My angle here is also not sympathetic of pampered, tired, over travelled footballers playing too many games. The threat here rests not on you, or I, or the Ronaldos, Fabregas` and Danny Mills` of this world, it rests squarely on Scudamore and his merry band of fat cats.

"A wise man should have money in his head, but not in his heart." Jonathan Swift.

When I heard the first murmurings of this proposal in the wake of the NFL match at Wembley, I dismissed it fairly swiftly. Another harebrained scheme, much like last year`s penalty shoot out for league fixtures suggestion, a fart in a boardroom somewhere destined to fizzle out and die as quickly as its foul stench was propelled into collective conscience. But the fact that all Premiership chairmen have unanimously agreed to explore the suggestion sets serious alarm bells ringing. I have long since discarded any notions of romance in the running of the national game; we all know money is at the heart of every decision. From the puerile and laughable mess that is international football, to inflated ticket prices. But while the game is certainly not run by the people, Scudamore and his merry band of solicitous pigs need to take their snouts out of the trough long enough to realise the game is still run for the people. Whether they wish to believe it or not, without us the game is nothing, which means no Lexus for Scudamore, Hill-Wood will be forced to smoke Hamlets, no more golden dildos for Sullivan and Gold. The Premier League has been buying my happiness for years, but, and I make no litigious promises of larceny, if they keep pushing, I will simply steal it back and reinvest it elsewhere. I`ve a feeling this particular Robin Hood will be joined by bands of thousands of merry men.

"Endless money forms the sinews of war." Cicero.

This morning, I had an e mail from a Millwall supporting friend of mine who, in reaction to the proposal, said, "You know, sometimes I`m really glad I support a crap team." Overseas interest in the Premiership has seen it flourish commercially, and the benefits have been there for all to see. Whilst jilted kick off times and prohibitive prices have soured the milk, we still have a product that works. Disenfranchised splinterings have emerged, but largely there have been enough fans like myself, who have gritted our teeth and coughed up the readies. I feel a move as dramatic as the one proposed, the Premier League will have a mass mutiny to deal with, similar to the one that Serie A still reels from. For the domestic supporters are your lifeblood. The people who buy the tickets, the programmes, the burgers, who cart their kiddies off to the club shop and buy the new club endorsed teabags. If you alienate these people, you have a serious problem on your hands. Already we are seeing decent sides such as Blackburn Rovers playing in front of decimated crowds. The Premier League is inviting a revolution, not a revolution of anger or bloodshed; there will be no riot shields in reaction to voodoo economics. The people simply will wilt away. Is it not safe to assume, Mr. Scudamore, that if you continue to dump on your own doorstep, people won`t want to come around for tea anymore?

"Numbers is hard to feel and they never have feelings/ but you push too hard, even numbers got limits/ Why did one straw break the camel's back? Here's the secret: the million other straws underneath it - it's all mathematics." Mos Def.

What this proposal will invite is a dystopian scene for the Premier League`s future, something allegorically similar to a scene from Mad Max. We are beginning to edge ever closer to the Thunderdome, to the precipice of extinction. Because when you lose the base of your product, the fans that turn up week in, week out, there is an inevitable domino effect. Clubs lose revenue, which in turn means they cannot attract the best players, which means the overseas interest they seek to cultivate disappears. That means lucrative television deals become less lucrative, the peasants have revolted and long left you. Mr. Scudamore, what does this leave you with? Low quality football games, watched in empty stadiums. Which satellite station or commercial enterprise will salivate for a piece of that pie?

"We will claim nothing, we will ask for nothing, we will take, we will occupy." Situationist graffiti seen in 1960s Paris.

Mr. Scudamore, Premier League chairmen. A revolution is at your doorstep. Invite it at your peril. Because this is a revolution that will not be telelvised.LD.

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The Journalist

Writer: Tim Stillman Mail feedback, articles or suggestions

Date:Friday February 8 2008

Time: 12:31PM

Your Comments

Excellent piece Tim!!! What more can I say?!
Very bad idea and too many negatives to even start mentioning why. Sign the petition against it -
I hope, perhaps vainly, that the Premiership chairmen are beginning to get an understanding of just how damaging their deliberations to squeeze a little more out of their 'product' has already begun to damage the product itself - as the eloquently controlled anger in this piece aptly illustrates. Generating more money that as someone else has said ends up as vomit in Ashley Coles cab or an outrageously expensive car that a player like Pennant has driven into a wall does nothing for the value of a sport that ceases to be the entertainment of the masses and simply becomes just another soap opera.
Agree with Rocky, a brilliant piece! But what a complete load of old horse manure this idea is. The 38 games we have currently are fine. Play every team twice, home and away. With this extra game however, although we would be seeded as to avoid us meeting United, Chelsea and Liverpool, we could conceivably draw for example Spurs and United could draw Derby County, Which is the easier game? Those games could mean the difference between the title and or relegation. AND to cap it all off they want to put it in the new 'winter break'?! WELL ITS NOT A BREAK THEN IS IT!! Id love to know what these guys were smoking when they came up with this one. Can you imagine it? A long board room table, smoke lingering undeerneath the ceiling. Scudamore and Barwick slumped up against the wall, joint in mouth, Sergent Pepper Album playing in the background, it all fits.
It's also a question of etiquette really. If you plan to cook your friends a really nice meal and buy a really nice bottle of wine, is it not reasonable that they come to your house to enjoy it?
Little Dutch
Love the analogy Littel Dutch. Great article Tim. The General (a director at Villa) has said those in power at villa have heard the message loud and clear, I'm sure the PL and all clubs are slightly shocked at the fans reaction and on this one, they'll have to back down. Villa LISTEN & HEAR Concerns If I may be a soft git for a moment, it is days like this that make me very proud of the community we have here on Vital.
The Fear
LD.. agree with above, excellent piece. But what next? ANYONE FOR TENNIS? OMG, what would the days be filled with if not to watch and debate the beautiful game?
A mutiny towards the lower leagues. Orient are a club I've always ahd a soft spot for..........
Little Dutch
when your nearest lower league club is Port Vale, thats a bit of a daunting prospect :>(
LD, unfortunately Orient will still charge you £25 or so to watch their game!

top piece, and cannot disagree with any of it.

The message is clear to the Prem and club chairmen - do this at your peril. Should the fans walk away, you will be left with a lovely big garden, but no beauiful flowers to put in it, just barren soil. If you push the fans away, there won't be enough income coming in to pay the wages of the players, or the Prem board.

Saturation point may be being reached here, and so many fans are almost up to *here* with the amount of money they are being milked for, and the vast sums of money being paid to young men, some of whom do not behave with any form of humility or semblance of respect and responsibility for the position they find themselves in.

Who remembers when rail and tube passengers in britain and london ceased to be 'passengers' and became 'customers'? Well, how i *love* to hear of my game being referred to as a 'product', whereas I was always under the mistaken illusion it was a game, a sport.

Where do you go from here, Premier League? push that little inch too far and you could well tip the scales and everything will come tumbling down crashing onto the floor.

»»Arsene Knows««
Congrats Rocky. Over a thousand signatures to the petition now, keep on spreading the word people!! I've been drumming up support on other Boro sites and forums. We can only fight this scourge of money-grabbing evil as one!!
Boro 01
Top man Boro, this will only work if all football fans stand firm.
Another point worth raising is that with certain cities buying 2 of our teams for a showcase game it stands to reason they will dictate which players they want to view after all they are paying for it so they'll state in the contract that for instance Fabregas, Adebayor and Gallas must play if fit. When Wenger (or any other coach with a modicum of self respect) has it ordered to him who must play, I feel he will call it a day. I cannot emphasise enough just how disastrous this whole scheme is, anyone that thinks it will remain at just one game and that this is'nt the start of a globe trotting prostitution racket is a ****ing fool. I understand all the fans abroad that wish to see The Arsenal or whoever but you must understand the ramifications of this and how the league we all care passionately about is losing any remainting shred of dignity or relevance.
LD, this is probably the first post of yours that I've ever disagreed with. As an American Arsenal Supporter, I try to come to matches at Ashburton when I can, at a minimum one match per season. I have a soft spot in my heart for the Old Country, love the pilgramage every year, and am as ardent an Arsenal supporter as you can be living several thousand miles away. I wake up at the crack of dawn every match day to watch my beloved team. So this proposal, taken at face value, means once a season the Arsenal will play a match in the US, Singapore, whatever. Why can't you just view it as one more European night during the season, just a bit further away? If you want to go, take a short holiday. If not, don't go! I would love to be able to see the Arsenal at home once every few seasons -- while STILL making my London treks to see them in The Home of Football. Let's face it mate, the Arsenal's fanbase is huge and global now... you should embrace this change and enjoy it instead of being so reactionary. I won't love the club any less, and if I can get more of my friends (and the youth team I coach) hooked on our club, I think that's a beautiful thing.
But what about the "lottery" system that will appear to be in place to decide league standings? Can you not see how that is detrimental to our league?
Relax people. I am as diehard an Arsenal supporter as you will find, and no I'm not British. lived in London a few years and am a New Yorker. arsenal and many teams in the premiership make buckets of money from viewers and shirt sales abroad. without them, the club could not afford to compete with Serie A and la Legia. And, what I would give to go see Arsenal live in New York. While those of you who regularly get to go to games are fortunate, I would call the huddled drunks I watch the games with at 7:30 am every Saturday or Sunday mornings in packed New York pubs equally (if not more so passionate supporters). Yes, there is money in the middle of all of this. Last I checked Arsenal isn't an NGO and the Premiership is not one either. that said some of the comments over the past 24hrs have the same odor of xenophobia some spout about Arsenal and its lack of 'British' players.
I spend more than £5,000 a year watching Arsenal, at home and abroad, viewing this as "just another trip abroad" doesn't figure well with my finances. The move threatens the very legitimacy of the competition. I'm all for having supporters abroad etc, that doesn't bother me. But I plough hours and hours of an average week and a good portion of my salary into this club, only for the club to then decide my support ain't good enough. It won;t stop here either, it'll be more and more games played abroad. As a supporter who is asked on a regular basis to go without sleep to travel to an away match to suit the fancies of sky, and pay a hell of a lot of money for the privilege, amongst a littany of other abuses, this is one step too far. At the risk of sounding arrogance, a sport and a football club only exists for you to watch because of people like me. If the club take away the foundations, everything else will tumble. I have Charlton, Crystal Palace and Millwall around the corner who would probably value my support much more. I get along to see all of them when I can, but Arsenal was an emotional connection, one ingrained in my family. Watching it stamped all over for the last few years by the money men has hurt, this would go much too far. If Arsenal and the Premier League want to alienate me and my ilk, they can suffer the consequences and see their "product" turn into a bloated corpse. With all due respect, America has a domestic league of its own.
Little Dutch
I just think you're being hypocritical LD, and I say that as someone who admires you and your posts and look forward to reading them every week. You enjoy the spoils of all the international TV revenue, do you not? Do you honestly think that all the world class talent would be in the prem if the money wasn't also there? Would you rather support the old Boring Boring Arsenal, 1 Nil to the Arsenal team (or Millwall heavens forfend) -- or would you rather watch talents like Ade, Cesc, Hleb, etc weave their magic each week? The way I see it, for the price of ONE away trip each year (or one match at the pub on the telly instead of in person, not the end of the world) you get to see 19 matches a year in person at home, and how many others away, and get to see the best talents the world has to offer on display, instead of a bunch of hoofers and muckers. That seems to me to be a fair bargain for you, and not a deal with the devil.
Devvil - This isn't about sharing the talent with the rest of the world, it's about completely altering the structure of our game, it's changing traditions that span over 100 years. I fear that foreign supporters of our game have been blinded by the prospect of getting to attend a live Premiership match........well you better make the most of it, because if this does come to pass, it won't be long before you can't even watch your beloved Arsenal on TV in a packed pub, nevermind getting to see them in the flesh.
erm, i agree the PL need to look at this a little more carefully and iron out the details , BUT it does have advantages. Ofcourse its about money and Brand, we aren't talking about playing in Europe, i think the US, OZ and Arab Emirates are destinations, where fans of those countries will pay top dollar to see prem teams. NFL did the wembley thing and it sold out very quickly and they have organised another game, there are alot of american football fans here, WWE comes here and sells out, F1 goes around the world, Cricket around the world, the barmy army follows them, Rugby does to a certain extent. So why not play 1 game a year ? its not a silly idea, I personally wouldn't get on a plane for 8 hours or more to see my team play against Spurs in some hot destination, lets face it, they get the sheeets in the marriot in london, what chance have spurs got in Dubai or India ! but i think if it means doing something to increase our world wide presence and global brand, its not terrible no ?
PG - The examples you give are laughable. Forumula1, Cricket & Rugby play internationally, yes, but the cricket and rugby teams that play in other countries but as international teams or in international competitions, not as part as their domestic game. Formula1 does not have a base country to compare that to our situation is stupid. The barmy army are supporters of the England cricket team and are no different to the followers of our English national football team. The NFL played one single game from their league, not a whole host of games, that fixture was also an exisiting fixture rather than a made up game with the opposition chosen at random. You really need to take a closer look at what the PL is proposing.
And WWE??? You may aswell be talking about thearte.
The NFL games sell out here because there is really no other venue for American football other than the States. American football fans go to see the sport at Wembley more so than just specific teams participating in it. Football is different. There are competitive 'soccer' leagues all over the world. Overseas supporters are not starved of the sport. The demand to see one leagues teams perform on a competitive basis cannot be met by distorting the domestic league competition. Invent an international competition if you must, or even play an expanded Community shield game overseas, but don't damage the integrity of the league to earn a pitifully meagre extra £5m a season maximum. Those overseas fans willing to spend big on supporting clubs outside their own league are free to do so but I can't help feeling that if they were to put it into supporting their domestic league it might eventually provide them with all they want at a lower cost.
Amos. If you want this territorial integrity and everyone to either suport local clubs or be silent on the subject, then simply stop signing foreign players. The argument, and a correct one in my opinion, that Arsene and Arsenal have made is that it is now a global game. it has global support. Maybe all of the supporters mocking Arsenal's English supporters have a point as you lot appear about close-minded and xenophobic about this as Spours aere about the passport make-up of Arsenal's side.
For the love of god, this is not about being closed minded or xenophobic, is about changing the entire fabric of our game for financial gain. I fully support the promotion of the English Premier League around the world, but doing it at the expense of parity and fairness in the league competition is not the way to go about it. You are too blinkered by your desire to get to see your team play.
As an overseas fan that'd love to see Arsenal play live, and probably will never have the funds to travel to the Emirates, I still think this is a stupid idea. I'd rather watch Arsenal win the league and some silverware on TV, than watch them lose a few points or pick up injuries due to fatigue, imagine players having to travel 18 hours to a fixture in say, Australia? Save the global tourism for pre-season!
The marketing lot are really smart devils. They knew very well that alot of the foreign fans would love this idea (when I say alot, I mean like 200 million people), A foreign cap doesn't seem so bad now does it? If you limited the amount of foreigners per team, that would pretty much kill the foreign games idea.Football is so
'Golden dildo's' Quality.I hope those evil puppett masters try to push this anal idea through,then perhaps the 2 million or so that would take to the london streets really will start a revolution,now i'm just off to prepare my Molatov cocktail.
Obomba, you are missing the point by a country mile. The product you think you are buying ceases to the the product it is if you compromise the integrity of the competition. You spend your money where you like it is of no concern whatsoever to me except where the price of your patronage is that the competition I and others enjoy becomes distorted to accomodate a few dollars more from your pocket. The contradiction you falsely propose is that we shouldn't employ foreign players if we are not prepared to play overseas. That is hogwash. We can and do play overseas now. If the European Cup, Carling Cup or FA Cup needs to become the Global Cup to embrace overseas fans then I have no problem with that. Making a joke out of a competition that has endured far longer than recent transient global interest - well over a 100 years in fact - serves no worthwhile purpose at all.
If you wish to support an overseas club, you are of course entitled to do so. But surely you realise there is the trade off that you will rarely get to see your team play. I don't see why I should be punished for that. I don't live in North London, I live a few miles South, so why don't Arsenal come and play a game nearer to me? Plenty of support in South London, let's have a home game at Selhurst Park then. I had an Arsenal season ticket in 1992/93, well before the interest from overseas became so massive. People like myself are the ones who this cash cow grazed on, to have it taken away because my money is no longer good enough, surely you can see why that upsets me? I make a hell of a lot of sacrifices to see my team, I could have a much nicer house, car, live a much more comfortable lifestyle. Hell, I'd quit this country in a second were it not for Arsenal and family. If they must, I can get on board with playing the Community Shield abroad, but to compromise the football league will make a mockery of the Premiership, ***** on all the loyal fans who reared it and the 'product' Scudamore and others look toe xpand will cease to exist altogether. This has nothing to do with the patriation of our squad, I don't see Belarus or the Ivory Coast or Cameroon suggested as venues. The premiership is going where the money is, not to honour or celebrate our diversity.
Little Dutch
Amos/Dutch. I hear most of your frustration, but to be fair I can't honestly say I digest it all. I have been to Highbury plenty but simply can't afford the time to come to London every year. love Arsenal passionately and want to view games live. This is one game a year. Does it add some randomness. Yes. Do all global change (and dare I say evolve). Yes. Sorry for over the top comments like 'xenephobic', etc. but there were some sweeping comments that I don't think recognize that Arsenal and the premiership are the best in the world in large part because of global supporters. And, maybe its just my personal bias that 'nostalgia' sometimes interferes with progress.
Have read a good few suggestions for mass non attendance on the weekend of the 12th April, all 10 games kick off at 3pm (a feckin rarity in itself these days) This could be beautiful people just the whole country acting as one and making a stand to say NO.
Petition is up to 2619 and going like the clappers, proud of ya Rock mate!.
It's patently untrue to say that all global change and evolution involves randomness. Randomness can be introduced but evolution left to itself usually produces logical development. Evolution would dictate that introducing a foreign body to your local sporting arena would consume your local competition and prevent it from evolving. Left to itself other local leagues might in time rival the Premiership if local support could be encouraged. This is the way that AFC and other Premiership clubs evolved - through its local base of support. Allowing it to consume your markets does the sport no favours at all. When you add to this that in order to feed this expansionist hunger a competition that has endured because it is equitable and symmetrical has to be distorted and you have the sporting equivalent of chopping down rain forests simply to feed avaricious appetites.
It could close in on 3000 by the time it has been up for 24 hours!!!
Foreign fans need to stop being selfish****s and see this idea for what it really is. As LD quoted Mos Def this is the last of a million last straws. To any foreign fan my question is simple, when you started suppporting Arsenal did you do it expecting to be able to see them live in your own backyard? If the answer is no, then nothing should change now.
Ozi Gooner
Ozi, I just don't see how it's selfish thinking it would be nice to see an Arsenal match once every few years or so at home (for me) in addition to my treks to THOF. LD, I love you man and I hear the passion in your posts, but I just don't understand why you feel like it undermines your support for ONE match a year to be abroad. How does that devalue either the competition or your support? From reading your posts, I know that you travel to Champions League matches abroad... you don't seem to have a problem with those. I just fail to see the problem with a prem match abroad.
Devvil - It devalues the competition because it ceases to be a league with the random element of the draw. I live a good 4-5 hours drive away from Ashburton Grove, but I would never expect the team to play closer to me for a small finacial gain. As harsh as Ozi's statement claiming people are being selfish, I'm sorry but he is correct. Your thoughts are entirely based on the self serving thought of being able to watch Arsenal on your own turf, with no regard what-so-ever to the dentrimental effects this move could have on the club. The harsh reality is that you chose to be a supporter of a foreign club, and moaning about not getting to see your team play in your country boarders on ridiculous.
Number 2889 on the petition R7
i do not like this idea.
Rocky, your objection makes the most sense to me out of anything I've heard from foes of this -- the randomness of the draw for the 39th game would give each team a somewhat unbalanced schedule, undoubtedly. For instance if the Arsenal drew Chel$ki while the Mancs drew Derby for the overseas match that would be very unfair. That would be, in my opinion, the hardest problem to solve. What would make the most sense to me -- the solution I could think of -- would be if that 39th match was "one extra local derby a saeason, but transported abroad". At least in that instance, we know ALL (or reasonably close to all) the games would be highly competitive and no one would get a completely easy tussle/free ride. The Arsenal would get a third match each season against the Scum, the Mancs would get City, Sunderland-Newcastle, Villa-Birmingham etc. etc. I do realize some teams may not have a natural local rival in some cases (does anyone really consider Reading their arch-enemy?) but that to me makes most sense from both a fairness POV and an interest POV. LD, you could look at it this way -- imagine yourself seeing an extra tussle against the Scum each year, in NY or Dubai or Tokyo wherever, where you could go without worrying about getting your head kicked in on your way out of the ground!
One extra derby game is just another skewed, illogical, perverse, unfair, awkward distortion of the competitions integrity. This whole issue has only ever been about the distortion of the league system not about playing overseas. We can fly up to 2,000 miles to play in European games in Russia at present. There simply isn't a fair way to introduce one extra round into the current league structure. To retain it's balance and fairness you would need to go the whole hog and make every team play each other three times a season, once each home, away and on a neutral ground. For it to be manageable, logically you would need to reduce the league by one third to 14 teams. Will the Prem chairmen vote for that? Never in a month of sundays.
Rocky i have read the proposals, in JAn they want to play a 39th game somewhere which is a 8-10 hour flight. ok I admit, not the greatest time to do it, cos i can see them giving the PL a 2 week break and then the back log comes towards the end of the season. BUT... 8-10 flight ? is it terrible ? i mean the players won't fly cattle class, they will be looked after at first class level, infact i always find it exciting to fly and never tiring. I admit the extra game in Jan could be better decided, ofcourse , if the extra game meant something, not only the money, but possible worth going all that way for ? like DOUBLE points or something that would go to the end of season results ? i do think if they do it, they should limit the destination, Dubai is only 6 hours away, which if you fly to Russia, or parts of the eastern block for CL games is not to bad. NY is only 7-8 hours, Egypt ( has a BIG football following ) is only 5.5 hours, but i think to talk Far East is too much yet, they should test it out on something closer. I am not opposed to it and don't see the BIg problem, its not taking anything away from your normal 38 game season, its an extra game, like a pre-season friendly, maybe thats when they should play it ? like before the Community Shield ? It doesn't take anything away from our game currently, but only adds, I don't understand why people are ebing so negative when really its merely an idea and needs the backing and remodelling before its launched properly. Ofcourse there was talk of a super league, and look what happened to that and the Atlantic league etc etc, 3 years is a long way off, i wouldn't burst a blood vessel just yet.
O.K, for arguments sake, United draw Birmingham City in this extra game and are drawn to play in Miami. Arsenal get Newcastle in Melbourne. United have a 10 hour flight and a five hour time difference. Arsenal have a 24 hour flight and a 10 hour time difference. Melbourne in Janaury has much hotter temperatures than Miami. So Arsenal get much more jetlag and play in hotter temperatures. How is this fair? There is just no way of making this work, it CANNOT be done. As for fans overseas, Ozi has it right, how much do you think prices will be? What chance do you think you have of getting a ticket? Who'll get them? The corporates will, this isn't about bringing the game to the people anymore than my anus is for urinating out of.
Little Dutch
and one more thing. Fergie is mouthing off against it, when he took his team to Dubai last week for a meaniless game, and boycotted the FA cup for the world club waste of time in Brazil during Jan, so not exactly in a position to say much hey ?
And yet Roy Keane, he of "prawn sandwiches" fame is all for it. How do you like that?
Little Dutch
well sunderland need the cash thats why LD.
if they come up with a correct proposal, then we have to look at it, but it needs alot of work, and not just saying, " we want to play an extra game somewhere around the world " i agree daft, but potentially not stupid.
LD i read the proposal as they want the 20 PL teams to ALL go to one destination and play that 39th game in the same city on that weekend or something, i may have misread it.
The biggest and worst aspect of this proposal is the fact that it is the 39th game and adds "luck" to a competition is supposed to be the fairest way to prove who is the best team. The taking the game abroad and screwing the fans over is a bad thing, but distorting the competition that has been run the same way the world over for over 100 years is just so unacceptable. And PG, no matter how many times you try and iron out the kinks, with one single game added to the programme, it's just not possible.
There's an article in the online gooner that makes the points I've made above. The guy also did some perusing and found that when Real Madrid played a pre season friendly in Beijing, fans were charged £41. The average monthly wage there is £82, half of your month's wages for a friendly. How much do you think a Premiership game would cost once the huge corporations in these countries have hoovered up all the tickets they want?
Little Dutch
If these games were played in brazil, they'd probably be twice or thrice the average monthly wage.Seriously.
It seems the Premier League officials have achieved the previously improbable feat of making Platini and Blatter sound like bastions of commonsense. The single strongest reason against the proposals is that they are palpably unfair. But there is another aspect to consider. While we can take some pride in the international interest that the PL has gained are we now reaching a point where it's scale and ambitions cease being a force for good in football? The vice president of Japans J-League has opposed the idea of PL games being played in Japan as it threatens the development of their own league. I think there is a serious point for all overseas fans to consider here. If the PL is allowed to expand beyond it's national borders other than through media channels does it risk becoming a parasite that devours other leagues, taking revenue away from them and ultimately stifling global competition to the detriment of the game as a whole? Does it matter?
Good point Amos!! I feel an ethical article coming along!!!
i dont think lettting aall the ten teams to play games overseas is a great idea.......cuz seriously hu is going to turn up for derby against newcastle........i think they shud satrt it off by say playing the FA cup semifinal in overseas venue its neway played on neutral venues might as well make it overseas......
and ol' arsene has just come out and spokeninn favour if it...i read somewhere that each teamis promised 5 mill quid i mean seriously can a team like derby or sunderland or ne of the otehr midtable teams say no to that......My instinctive reaction is not to be against innovation, because I believe as well you have to accept an innovative attitude," thats wat arsene said.....i think he has a point
for i'm in asia region..i think this is bad idea.. i rather go to london while on vacation and watch at the grove..the atmosphere are better there and the stadium is fantastic..
thinking about it, if spurs travelled to the far east and ate n a marriott there, they could get the *****s for the rest of the second half of the season !
To be honest, I'm quite disappointed that this idea was even brought up as I had a (stereotype) impression that the English respect their traditions very much and go far to protect their national pride. I mean, all very true, the game's become global. But isn't it just natural that people support their teams in different ways? And they knew it when they (I) started supporting their clubs that they wouldn't be seeing them in flesh week in week out. I've moved to London and I still haven't had a chance to go to the Emirates cos I just can't get a ticket. Adding a game in another city isn't gonna 'help' a lot of fans have access, either, it's just about 40,000 people seeing it live we're talking about. It's fine if Madonna goes on a tour, singing and dancing around the world because she's not in a competition that's supposed to be fair and competitive. But a 'domestic' league? Come on! If we could add a game elsewhere, it's not 'domestic' anymore is it? If we could add some random game at the end of in a break of a season or whenever they plan to, it's not a league game anymore is it? I say they can do all the random things with cups or whatever. But the very idea, and beauty, of the league is for everyone to play everyone else, home and away, so that's almost as fair as it gets. I just don't see how you can keep it fair if you travel somewhere else and play in front of entirely different environments.
Lou the Gunneress
I think some of us was misled to think Arsene's 'for' this idea. I watched the original press conference and his exclusive interview on Arsenal TV Online where he said he's 'not against innovation' and that the criteria he'll use to assess the proposal are the game's competitive quality, fairness and promotion. If an idea can do fulfill all of these, he'd be open to it. But now he doesn't want to say no straightaway. So I don't think he's 'pro-change.' And now Gooners, rest assured, apparently he's 20/80 on this idea, i.e. 20% for, 80% against, when asked specifically what his initial reaction was. It's reported as such on Arseblog:
Lou the Gunneress
Firstly nice article (i am always impressed with the quality of articles on here). Little dutchs analogy of the meal and friends is a good one. the Premier league has been built by the local people and should be for the local people. i dont live in englad but try and get to watch blackburn as often as possible as i believe that there is no better place to see them than in blackburn, with the locals who have a true affinity with the club through family connections and such. also there can not be comparisons between this proposal and other sports, it is a domestic season and as such should be played domestically, why would fans of any team want to travel for eight hours to watch 90mins of football? hope this idea gets thrown in the bin and fast
durks de rover
manutd jus *****ed up at home this cud well turn out to be a great weekend.......
As I already mentioned on Rocky's post (twice-sorry about that) I'd love to see a match out in my neck of the woods, but not at the expense of the leagues integrity... Reading some of the posts, I'm bemused at the accusations of hypocrisy and xenophobia being levelled at the likes of LD, Rocky etc... Come on guys it really isn't exactly rocket science is it? The proposal as it stands, would more or less make the league worthless, is that what you really want? I certainly don't... At the end of the day I get to watch more matches now than I did when I lived 10 minutes walk from Highbury, the coverage in SE Asia is brilliant, so I really cannot complain (just imagine how frustrating it was for me to have to listen to Saturday matches on the radio whilst being able to hear the songs and chants emanating from Highbury - library my erse) It's not the globalisation that is the cause for concern, just the way the pl are going about it.... Oh and as always LD superb piece, much better than the cack written by so called 'pros' on other sites...

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