Many football fans will no doubt agree that the Barclays English Premiership appears to be losing its appeal as season 2012/13 draws to a close.
What could be best described as a “decent” Manchester United side ran away with this year’s Championship, with City, Chelsea, and Arsenal all imploding at various points to make it a less interesting race than many had predicted.
Many criticise the standard of football in the SPL, and to be fair rightly so, and point to the fact it’s a one horse race but since the EPL’s inception new crowned champions Man Utd have dominated proceedings since day dot. The SPL, in fairness, used to be a two horse affair and some critics would bemoan that fact but the club known as Rangers has been sacrificed for cheap burgers and and glue and are currently starring as a pantomime horse in the lower leagues of Scotland.
I’ve heard it being said on numerous occasions that the EPL is the best league in the world. It is if you believe the marketing maniacs at Sky. The same mob who attach the drone of bagpipes to every live Scottish match and that bloody Belhaven Best advert between the two halves of any live match. The good folks of London must think that we pursue haggis in the hills and wear kilts playing football whilst swigging Besty in our football vesty. Cringeworthy and patronising to the hilt.
Why not advertise Jellied Eels to the tune of “Any Old Iron” during the break of Spurs v Arsenal? Take note Sky. Rant over.
Getting back to the football, I beg to differ with the Sky marketing mob and the pompous presenters and pundits.
For me La Liga and the Bundesliga are better by far, and who can argue given the fact both countries were represented in the Champions League Semi-Finals with Germany coming out on top and quite comfortably to take their deck chairs at Wembley? I know, I know I’m stereotyping – it’s the brainwashing by Sky. I do hope they play the national anthem of Germany at Wembley. It will stick in the throats of the uber-patriotic and Anglophiles at Sky. Deutschlan uber Alles indeed. Germany on top of the world.
Technically, the Spanish and Germans seem to be on the ball if you pardon the pun.. The German sides have gained the upper hand this season – and have excelled in the Champions League – the game’s biggest barometer. You really only have to look at Europe to confirm the English club game is on the slide. Scottish champions Celtic managed to do as well as their English counterparts. In fact, they absolutely eclipsed Man City who finished rock bottom of their group with Celtic spending a fraction of what City shelled out.
After the sensational last day drama of last year when Manchester City nicked the title trophy from under the noses of a stunned Manchester United, I thought City would do well in Europe but Mancini’s side capitulated and embarrassed their fans. They have too many players who have under-performed and even Mancini has questioned their consistency. But then he would do, given that he recently signed a 5 year deal to stay at the Etihad.
You can’t tell me that Manchester United is better than Barcelona, Real Madrid or Bayern or Dortmund? These are teams that blazing a trail in Europe and could continue to do so for the foreseeable future.
Even with City in second and not performing as they would be expected (given the money they have spent) they are destined to finish trailing massively in points behind Manchester United. A fine example of a one-horse race.
Sky Sports do a tremendous job of marketing the EPL; there have been some cracking games – and so there should be given the amount of games per season. But is the standard as high as we are led to believe?
One major criticism of the Premier League has been the dominance of the the bigger clubs since its inception.
With the exception of Blackburn Rovers in 1994-95 Season and Manchester City last year only three clubs have won the Premier League title – Manchester United, Arsenal and Chelsea. Furthermore, Manchester United has not finished outside the top three since the formation of the Premier League.
You will always have the battle for European spots but seeing a Manchester United has dominated for so long – is there really any appeal to the League. The odds on Utd retaining their crown will no doubt be extremely short and there appears to be no benefit in terms of England’s placing in European and international football. It’s possible this will change now that Ferguson has gone … but Manchester United remain a huge club regardless, and whoever they bring in will be aiming to hit the ground running.
Many critics also think that the lavish spending on foreign imports has done little or no good the English national side. It was being hotly debated on Match of the Day the other week whether Rickie Lambert should be selected for England as he’s the top English scorer with 14 goals to his name at that time slightly ahead of Chelsea’s Frank Lampard and United’s Wayne Rooney.
The cusp of the matter is that there is no English player in the EPL scoring prolifically. Fourteen goals is not a bad return for a player from a provincial side like Southampton but for Rooney only to be cashing in just over double figures it shows how the standard has dropped.
My theory to is that the bottom ten clubs in the English Premier League are no more than Championship teams. They’re there for the money. They won’t qualify for Europe and three are always going to back down to the lower League. Look at Newcastle…oft-times referred to as a “sleeping giant”. Their continuous trophyless slumber continues and long may it to be honest. A frankly, poor and ordinary Liverpool side drilled six past them last week and was great to see the arrogant, opinionated Pardew with mud in his eyes after him belittling Celtic and scottish football previously.
In fact, it was a barrowload of one-horse race shit over his head.
Look at Queen’s Park Rangers. Spent fortunes trying to retain EPL status with an rumoured £87m a year wage bill only to be relegated. I certainly wouldn’t be watching them play Stoke or West Ham v Swansea.
I’m beginning to wonder why I pay the subscription to Sky given what is being served up is certainly nowhere near the quality we are led to believe we are been given.
I honestly get more out of the edited highlights of Match of the Day on a Sunday morning than I do with the live drivel.
Will I keep my subscription? Of course I will but merely for the fact that Celtic’s away games are covered. I will also watch the bigger games in the EPL, Real v Barca and Champions League games.
Our friends down south will need to learn some humility and grace and realise that the product is waning.
Anyone who argues that the Premiership is the best League in the world needs to be at Wembley on May 25th 2013..