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I Hope Arsene's Wrong


The Camden Cad
Aug 24, 2004
North London

How fantastic was this weekend's football? There was Arsenal's emphatic destruction of Everton and Liverpool's surprising stumble at White Hart Lane. Manchester United and Chelsea got their three points, but only after being made to work for them by two teams that no-one expects to even stay up. The EPL is back with a bang. So why would anyone want to destroy it?

Arsene Wenger's prophecy of a European Super League is terrifying because if anyone understands what's going on in the boardrooms of the elite, it's him. Wenger is a wise man and if he's raising the spectre of a breakaway league, then it's obviously something more than just an idea scribbled on the back of a cigarette box. But what could possibly be gained by tearing the best clubs out of their national leagues and dropping them into a single division?

The transplant would destroy every individual league at a stroke. Sure, Tottenham might finally have a run at the title, but will it mean anything to them with Liverpool, Manchester United, Arsenal and Chelsea off playing the likes of Bayern Munich and AC Milan? It will relegate the most exciting division in the world to a feeder league, ******* the heart and soul, the ambition and the inspiration out of a competition that has thrilled generations since its inception in 1888. And things won't look any brighter in France, Spain, Germany, Italy or anywhere else daft enough to get involved either.

It always amuses me when football chairmen argue for things like this. They never seem to realise that an invitation is no actual guarantee of success. You can put as many as blue-chip elite teams as you like into the bowl, but someone's going to finish last, someone's going to overspend and eventually someone's going to slip out and never come back. Of the 22 founding members of the EPL in 1992, only nine still remain. They betrayed the rest of the Football League with their greed and 13 teams found that when relegation eventually came for them like an avenging angel that they had burned the bridge that would have led them back. Five of them suffered so badly that they now linger in the third division like a bad smell in a lift.

There is no need for a European Super League, we have the Champions League. There is no need for even more money, there's far too much of it already. Football's great, so why bother changing it?