Discussion in 'Fugu's Business of Sports' started by NextBigThing, Apr 19, 2021.
North American sports is like a whole different dimension compared to European sports.
As someone vaguely aware of past Super League threats but not in the know about issues and what is at stake, found today's Athletic article informative:
European Super League explained: the contracts, plots and threats that shook football to its core
I really don't understand how European fans tolerate and defend this. Those domestic leagues are jokes, no parity at all, heavyweights fighting middleweights and lightweights, makes no sense. For fans of smaller cities it would be better without the goliath clubs who should be "promoted" to this new top league, more parity then.
You're fundamentally misunderstanding the structure of this. Again, THIS DOES NOT REPLACE THE DOMESTIC LEAGUES. Literally nothing you're complaining about is solved by this proposal. All that is being 'solved' is the pesky annoying reality that the likes of West Ham or Leicester might make it into next year's champions league while the majority of England's Super League nominees are in risk of not making the cut altogether.
Imagine Montreal having their chance at a playoff spot yanked out from under their feet because Detroit took it upon themselves to decide it had a better financial pedigree regardless of on-ice results, and kept the Habs perpetually locked out of the postseason regardless of either team's regular season performance in future years. That's the format you're rooting for here.
In Europe we always say that the American/Asian billionaire owners are disconnected from the sport. They treat football like it’s a ordinary product, and they believe they know what we want - but they don’t. Let me try to explain it for you...
We watch football because of the emotional values. The traditions. The passion. The excitement of smaller teams being able to climb to the top. The competitive nature of the sport.
We don’t give a damn about growth, conquering new markets... or being entertained (at least the guys following my local team, haha). Winning would be nice, but absolutely not on the cost of the club losing the connection to the local community or the competitive nature of the sport. Everyone should always be able to make it to the top.
Your club is a huge part of your identity, you learn to love your team and hate your rivals. It doesn’t matter if your rival is playing 3 tiers below your team, you still loathe them. I’m 100% sure that all Liverpool fans rather see their team play Everton than Barcelona because of the feelings around such a game.
All European clubs are connected to the same tree (it doesn’t matter if it’s Real Madrid or a team from the seventh tier in Sweden). And all clubs are fighting for the same trophy - the Champions League. Some clubs are closer than others though. Isn’t that amazing?
However, the greedy owners believe that we want to be entertained, that we’re getting excited of watching bigger teams play each other’s every week. No, that’s not the case because there is no feelings/passion in that format. They also want to close the most prestigious tournament for other teams, they want to get the biggest reward for themselves (the owners) every year... not because of sporting merit - only because of greed and having a wealthy owner. At the moment the 12 self-proclaimed Super teams is trying to conduct a coup d’etat on what football is for all (at least the vast majority) of the European fans. They are tying to destroy the sport from within. We will never accept it and it has to be stopped.
The fact that Arsenal and Tottenham are included in this really shows that it's not about meritocracy/promoting to a more even league. Their billionaire owners are just tired of not printing all of the money they can.
So they'd rather have their team get spanked more regularly by the elite teams in Europe (excluding PSG and the Germans)
Really difficult as a North American sports fan to understand the distaste for this, so cool to see the commentary from some European posters here.
While the promotion and relegation format is kind of cool, it is really a struggle for me to consider some teams essentially have no chance to win a title - ever.
The only comparable I have is when Red Bull bought a team in Leipzig and started in tier 5 and pumped enough money into the team that it is now a top tier Bundesliga team. Having family roots in Leipzig but being entirely of the CDN mindset, I thought that was cool and a great way to get Leipzig on the global sporting map. However many locals were really not supportive (at least years ago).
I was actually thinking, how long before we see Red Bull push for a team perhaps using Leipzig as the option. Though I'm sure a New York team would be their ideal scenario, they just couldn't get a competitive team under MLS budget restraints.
I don't have a horse in the race, but I am still curious to see how things unfold. I can appreciate the "loyalty" and "spirit of the game" arguments against this, however criticism of money and greed I don't buy. This is already a sport that buys and sells players, that is all about the rich clubs, has some of the worst history of match fixing and has literally sold world cup events. It's already all about the money.
same way we would've never gotten that amazing run by Leicester City a few years ago
I would say that our system with the open leagues actually make it possible for everyone to win, not the other way around. All teams can get promoted to the top tier, even if they don’t have the best facilities or the wealthiest owner. Everything is possible.
In Sweden and Germany (and some other countries as well), 51% of all clubs are owned by the members of the clubs. Owned by the people, the fans. Preventing rich tycoons from buying the club and doing what they want without asking the members, that’s probably the reason why Dortmund and Bayern Münich said ‘no’ to the whole idea of the ESL. The members would never have voted in favour of the decision. There is only one club in Germany that decided to remove the 50+1 rule, that happened when Red Bull hijacked a small club in the fifth tier of Germany football called SSV Markranstädt. They renamed the club to Red Bull Leipzig and erased their history. That’s why they are disliked in the whole football world. Today they’re competing on different terms compared to all other German sides, but that’s a tale for another thread.
Well, the whole ESL is created to satisfy the “future fans”. That’s the people living in the Middle East and Asia where there is no competitive football teams. It’s a market with a lot of potential since the kids are not bound to a team by their location - and they have money for merchandise. The so-called “legacy fans” (words from a board member of one of the ESL clubs), the people who have been supporting the teams for a lifetime - in generations - are not the fans of the future according to them. There is much more money, for the owners, to make if they start to satisfy the new market. I get their idea, it’s greedy because it’s all about the money... but they should not say that they are creating this league “to save the football”. I think it’s obvious that the owners created this league because they want to make even more money. They don’t give a damn about what the local fans think, and owners like Stan Kroenke are not known for caring about the people in the local community. Right?
I read an article in the FT today, they wrote about the financial structure of the ESL. The teams are not allowed to invest more than 55% of the revenues of the ESL into the sporting operations of the clubs. That means that 45% of the revenues is going back to the owners. Like... hello? If that’s not a proof that it’s all about the money I don’t know what is (if it’s true, that is).
Chelsea is going to withdraw from the ESL.
NA sports buy and sell players, don't kid yourself. It's just done a different way. How different is that a soccer club sends cash in exchange for a player, as opposed to 2 players and 3 draft picks. Don't forget as well, the $15 million in 1988 dollars was a huge part of the Gretzky trade.
Then you have the fact that no matter how badly they do, the Pittsburgh Pirates, or whatever franchise that has had little success over a long period of time, and typically has a rich owner as well, can cry poor as an excuse for not investing in the team, and never have to worry about it, because there is no relegation. In a lot of ways, if the Pirates don't want to compete with the Yankees, promo/rel actually allows them to play at the level they think is more appropriate.
As to your comment about the money, don't confuse the suits with the customers. Walter O'Malley, longtime Dodgers owner, was once asked (back in the days when there was only the world series) if he would prefer to win the world series in 4, or lose it in 7. He just smiled, but didn't answer. Suits will always try to grab themselves money by any means necessary. Doesn't mean the customers have to go along with their ideas. In a lot of ways, customers are at fault for having gone along with things for so long as it is.
The rumors I saw last night were that UEFA were going to kick the rebel teams out of the current Champions League and Europa League if they don’t change course. Leagues are considering similar measures. UEFA can basically say that players involved in the Super League will not be allowed to play for their national teams.
The real followers know that the governing bodies will never allow this to happen, and they have a point. Thing is, ESL teams might point to long time malfeasance within UEFA and FIFA and try to mobilize fans who think similarly... and that’s not an unfair point.
The problem... allowing this to take hold will prompt other sports to act similarly. Bye bye to Green Bay Packers, to the Utah Jazz, the Cincinnati Reds, and bye bye to Winnipeg, Calgary, Edmonton, Ottawa, Buffalo, et cetera.
yep--Once the teams started finding out they would not ne able to play in any other tournament they started having second thought. Those tournament earn the teams a lot of money
Man city is out as well according to reports here in the UK
Man City, Chelsea withdraw from Super League
Chelsea, Manchester City, Barcelona, and Atletico Madrid are out of the Super League
Rumor has it that Andrea Angelli is resigning as President of Juventus
I don’t care what anyone says, I love this Super League. Imagine one week Man U plays Madrid. Then the following week Barcelona and then Milan after that. I only watch a handful of matches a year, but you can bet your ass I’m going to watch as much of the Super League as possible. Sounds a hell of a lot more entertaining than Man U vs Blackpool, Queens Park, or other basement dwellers.
I’m a casual soccer fan and this is a great way to attract more casuals and potentially turn them into hardcore fans. Can’t wait for this thing to get going.
That already exists, it's called the Champions League.
It only sounds more entertaining because you're watching names instead of the game itself.
As has been said many times, your "imagine one week...." becomes old in a matter of a season or two. The reason it's a big deal to you right now, is because those games rarely happen. Once it's a regular thing, meh. How did baseball's expanded playoffs work out long term with early rounds not selling out?
Meh. Always felt the away goals rule was too gimmicky.
man u fans in meltdown as well
I really don't think you can legitimately compare the history, economics, and culture of European football to the franchise system in North American sports. If the MLB, NFL, NHL, etc were truly interested in contraction they would have done it by now.
And your examples are pretty poor too. Bye bye to the Packers?? In what world would that be a prudent move by the league?
Hint: neither Juve (Turin) nor Liverpool are particularly large markets either, comparatively speaking. Doesn't mean they're not backed by deep pockets and a huuuuge draw though. Just like Green Bay.
I have some bad news for you then.......
And what about the history of the clubs trying to form the ESL?
Thing is, I have to think the breakaway clubs knew there would be a reaction... even among their own fans. So why do this? Maybe because there’s more money in television than in attendance.
Which brings me back to what I said as the driver to why leagues may very well dump all over their history if the timing and bids are right. Playing games all over the globe, concocting any number of schemes, lots of possibilities.
It’s being pointed out that the first English clubs to pull out are the ones without American ownership. Make of that what you will.
EDIT- At this hour, all the English clubs have declared that they are exiting the deal.
All English teams are out. Here in the UK the fan backlash was intense.
Separate names with a comma.