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Relegating Relegation
Footytubeblog (Blog) 5 years ago
Fergie has branded it as suicide; Dave Whelan has threatened to withdraw Wigan from the Premier League, while the idea of ceasing relegation has been welcomed about as much as a fart in an elevator. Most sensible folk will arguably look upon this as simply a non-starter, but as the sportswear tycoon points out - anything is possible.

Whelan is right and while we all agree with Fergie’s initial standpoint on the situation, the truth of the matter is the ever increasing foreign ownership in Premier League can dictate that such a motion will be passed through. Let’s be honest we don’t believe for a minute that they bought into their football clubs for simply the love of the English game did we? They have come here to cash in on the most exciting and profitable League in Europe; not worry about whether the very fabric and structure of the English game is retained. How to make the most money is the undercurrent of all their cleverly constructed statements and the sooner we wake up to this very reality the better.

We were debating the very subject at work yesterday about whether you would sooner see the scrapping of relegation offset against a proposed European Super League; arguably the next money making venture to be aired in the coming weeks.

Strange as it may seem but the scrapping of relegation seemed the more popular of the two, given that they believe it would maintain the financial appeal of English football with the big boys still in it. It is the very reason why the SPL are so desperate to retain the services of Rangers and Celtic for sponsorship reasons. Why obviously the majority of football fans would be against both ventures, I believe we would be naive to completely rule either possibility out - given the very financial state the game is currently in.

Unfortunately we are witnessing the cons of Platini’s fair play ruling. While for the large part these initiatives do bring some common sense to the game and keep everyone on a level playing field, the restricting of what clubs can spend ensures that clubs will look to exploit all areas to generate extra funds. It is no wonder that Liverpool felt the need to moot the idea of negotiating their own TV deals, while the owners of Manchester City put together their own stadium sponsorship deal (even though they don’t own the stadium). Clubs have little option but to explore these areas as the high cost of success ensures that every avenue needs to be explored. Chairman need to protect their football club and ensure that their futures are safeguarded; hence why the proposal to maintain Premier League statuses may well prove appealing.

While the prospect of this idea may seem crazy in theory; the harsh financial picture in football may force the hands of chairman who are keen to safeguard their investment. Dave Whelan suggested that anything is possible these days in football – we can only hope for the sake of the beautiful game that it proves little more than just an idea.

Blog by James Price

This blog does not necessarily reflect the views and opinions of footytube or its partners.
Araz (Queens Park Rangers) 5 years ago
The idea of scrapping relegation is absurd and comes from the mind of those who don't understand football but do understand money making. The two just don't go together right now and forcing them together by alienating the fans is not the way to go about it.

For starters we should remember that foreign ownership alone can't change league rules even if in the highly unlikely event that the required 14 all vote for it, the FA still retains the power of veto and at least for now they are against it.

The other issue is that the vast majority of the reason why club owners don't make the money they'd like to is that the largest chunk of their income goes on player salaries, when a player earns more in a week than the prime minister does in a year anyone who looks at other ways to solve the problem with football needs to be locked up and kept away from the game.

In my humble opinion if all the clubs in Europe had to peg what they can pay their players against their income they would focus on reducing player salaries, and if those players can't change the situation by jumping ship then believe me they won't go on strike or resign, they'll play the game they love for whatever money is on the table, and if they don't there are many lining up to take their places who will play for nothing, and those are the players I want at my club!
Tanmay (Footytube Moderator) 5 years ago
I think this article is baseless. Any forward looking owner of a football club knows that banning relegation means that a large chunk of local fans will cease to have any stake in the football being played. Supporters of West Ham, Mill Wall, Leeds United and countless other clubs will react very negatively to the decision and simply stop caring about what happens in the big league. At best they will watch it like neutrals.

It's hard to see what the gain is. If a foreign firm is serious about investing in a club, relegation should be out of the picture. Losing a lot of domestic fans to avoid a 1-in-100 chance of a big loss makes no sense financially.

And if you're really forward looking, doing away with relegation means the quality of football will slowly but surely drop among the bottom 4-5 teams, making the league uncompetitive and boring to watch. Why would anyone wish that upon themselves?

Bottomline: If you're in it for the long run, as I believe the owners of Chelsea, L'pool and City all are, you won't support this move
KingHarryKewell (Liverpool) 5 years ago
What makes the EPL competition so exciting during the season? Is it seeing who will be crowned champions come May? Who will take the champions league spots? Europa league spots? Well yes, they do, but it's also who will stay up at the end of the season! Let me explain as to why this move then is bad for the EPL in 4 reasons: -

1. Excitement - Take last season for example - right on the last day, Blackburn, Wigan, Wolves, Birmingham and Blackpool (with West Ham already down and out on the foot of the ladder) were all battling to stay afloat. With the title all sewn up by Manchester United, this was a thriller to watch and see who would stay and who would go. In the end, the axe fell on Brum and Blackpool, the latter not going down without a fight if memory serves me rightly! You also have to take into account that one of the last matches was Blackburn v Wolves - a real battle! See how exciting that is already? What if relegation was scrapped? We wouldn't have these exciting battles at the end of the season, and teams like Wigan will be more like "oh well, we finished last, but at least we're still in the EPL next year, so let's not try on the last day. " If the top few spots are assured, one word then comes to mind - boring. Boring boring boring!

2. Change - Whilst it's good to see big clubs in the EPL doing well, what really makes the EPL is seeing small clubs (Burnley, Blackpool and Swansea) having a chance to make an impression in the big comp. It brings freshness and sometimes unpredictability in the competition. Who would've thought that Burnley would beat Manchester United 1-0 a few seasons back? Or that Blackpool (which pains me to say it) beat Liverpool twice? That Newcastle, in their second season back in the top flight, is currently in the top 4? Or Swansea being the first Welsh team ever to make it to the EPL? Who of us here would love to see clubs with history (eg West Ham and Leeds) back in the top flight? Not to mention the golden story of all - Norwich City getting back-to-back promotions in the space of 2 seasons. This is what makes the competition - small and unique clubs challenging themselves in the top flight, sometimes even making those of us who have cheered for our team in the EPL for years watching and cheering for the underdog (until they play our team ). What will cancelling relegation do to this? Take out history and excitement, and consign those in the Championship that deserve a spot in the top flight, even for a season, a chance to play with the big boys.

3. Who cares? - Continuing on from my last sentence, taking out relegation will mean that players in the Championship will 100% seek to move to EPL clubs, instead of playing their way to the EPL and get noticed. A removal of promotion/relegation would crush their dreams otherwise, and you'll find that Championship players will move for EPL clubs more as they'd have no hope in playing their way to the competition, and that the Championship will be filled with nothing more than players on loan from EPL clubs. It would give a sense of disloyalty and apathy in the competition, which in turn will take the excitement out of the game that we all love.

4. It's a game in England - What the foreign owners need to understand that this competition is played in England, not America. I understand from a business perspective that going down to the Championship will hurt financially, but you also need to understand that on the reverse, for promotion, that's somewhat good financially! It's a risk you need to take in business when you take on ownership of a club. Stop putting American-isms into the game. I know that the MLS and other sports in the USA do not have this system, but it doesn't automatically mean that England should submit too. If you don't like it, get out. We don't want your meddling interfering with the sport that a lot of us here love.

In conclusion (and sorry for the length) keep the system the way it is. Don't ruin a great competition and take the fun and competitiveness out of England
Kyuss (Barcelona) 5 years ago
Are you having some special-themed week of absurd ideas over there in Britain? Starting with the discussion suggesting that the leading clubs should receive a larger slice of the money from overseas TV rights and now this one. There seems to be a serious tendency towards a franchising system like its usual in american pro-sport, driven by investors that want their investments to pay off.... I don't know what I should think of that. It appears to me the EPL is in an early stage of some serious gamechanging processes. The big question is, whether the tradition or the money will win in this fight!

At least it puts my mind at rest knowing that there is a still a majority that wants to preserve the status quo!
Ruskin (Liverpool) 5 years ago
In one word it will never happen. I do agree that owners have a say in the future of clubs. Rupert murdoch once owned man you. Now he owns sky. They do a very professional job in running and bringing football with interactive sites like this to a wider audience wherever soccer is played. Now there is all so sky bet, all good but the spin offs. If the future would go the way of the four major sports in the you. S. A. Then these areas of contention and how they have dealt with these rising questions, perhaps We could learn
Hardstone (NE Revolution) 5 years ago
Relagation is great! As a fairly neutral fan, but one who loves the English game, I would be very disappointed to see a fixed roster of PL teams. For one, who stays? Will there be a playoff or a payoff?! I could actually see a relegation system working for major league baseball. What do you think Fenway Group?
SrpskiCevap (Inter Milan) 5 years ago
Don't let the Premier League get North America'd please
Luuandrew2 (Everton) 5 years ago
The best games in the last month of the season are always the relegation-threatened teams
Edgar193 (Manchester United) 5 years ago
This is ridiculous. I can't believe this is even discussed. Its like trying to change christmas day or something like that. Relegation makes THE premier league WHAT IT IS! I don't give a f**k what some stupid foreigners want for their petrodolar injected clubs but they cannot mess with tradition
[account-removed] 5 years ago
What a stupid idea. What about all the teams in the second division, championship division, 34d division? This isn't american football. This is english football. Stoke citym manchester city, liverpool arsenal tottenham arent franchises. They are teams, of towns and cities and villages. Ceasing relegation would remove the best part of english football. The amazing idea that any team could possibly win epl out of hundreds of teams in the country of england. Take ceasing relegation to nba

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