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Soccer Report Extra Podcast


Soccer Report Extra Podcast: Episode 42 – An Orwellian Future For Club Football?

Written by on October 17, 2011 | 15 Comments »
Posted in General, Soccer Report Extra Podcast

In this week’s pod, Bobby McMahon, puts on his ‘prognosti-goggles’ (TM) and predicts that it’s only a matter of time before Big Brother (FIFA) eventually gains control of top-level club football – negating the need for clubs to negotiate their own foreign TV rights deals.  Returning to the present, we break-down Manchester United’s lucky draw at Anfield, and Eoin even wonders whether or not clubs need to deploy a defensive wall on free kicks anymore (I know, provocative right?).  The guys also embrace their inner ‘Arry and assess Newcastle’s performance versus Spurs, complete with butchered opponent’s names (enough to make an old ‘wheeler-dealer’ proud).  There’s also a quick stop in MLS to address Thierry Henry’s ridiculous red card, and the ever impressive crowds in Seattle (this time to see off the great Kasey Keller).  Don’t forget to leave your comments below, and if you’re accessing the podcast from iTunes, why not leave a comment and give us a rating there as well. Enjoy!

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15 responses to “Soccer Report Extra Podcast: Episode 42 – An Orwellian Future For Club Football?”

  1. Lukasz says:

    bundesliga already makes more profit than the premier league hopefully it becomes number one or two.

  2. Ed Gomes says:

    I really enjoyed the podcast.

    I too was surprised by Dalglish’s section after the game. I would have thought that he would have been angry at not getting all three points. I still say that Dalglish will get it wrong most of the time.
    If Carroll doesn’t start improving, for Liverpool & England, soon that merchandise money may never come.

    Another one that will get it wrong is Harry. The Spurs should be contenders with the squad they have, yet I see nothing from Harry that brings any confidence.

    Maybe that’s why Wenger won’t change approach. With these two as his only competition he can’t imagine not making the CL.

    As for the Super League, run by FIFA, it makes perfect sense. They can pluck enough teams from around Europe where you could created two leagues in order to maintain relegation. Then again, no relegation would just allow the rich to get richer.
    Obviously country leagues would still exist, but the money just would be there.
    What I think people are ignoring is that costs would also go up for teams. Travel would be costly and difficult on the players. Deeper squads would be a must.

    The game has already begun to change economically. Economist have herald Russia, Brazil, China and India has the countries poised for a financial boom. We are already seeing it in Brazil, where player costs have gone way up. When have you ever heard of a Brazilian team saying no to 20 million for a player. They do now. Transfer costs out of Brazil have gone up, and it’s definitely affecting “Big” selling clubs and leagues.
    Russia isn’t far behind in the lunacy of billionaire owners.

    As for the EPL to allow clubs to make their own television deals, it would kill the league. The disparity is already high, and that would be the final straw.

    MLS Fantasy game? Isn’t that what the league itself is doing, since they own all the contracts?
    I am a big believer in having dominant teams. For all the trumpeting that the NFL does in regards to parody, their ratings are always highest when there’s a dominant team. And Bobby, Green Bay can’t be considered a small market due to their huge following nation wide. Jacksonville yes, but not the Packers.
    In getting back to the MLS, for a league that needs the Galaxy to win and dominate, they have still managed to get it wrong. Yes the Seattle fans are great, but the league would still be better off if the Galaxy dominated.
    On a side note, I read that PSG players were excited about the possibility of Becks going there. Really? Is the wife cheerleading?

  3. Gillian says:

    As always, thanks for the fun pod. And please edit yourselves to make it sound like you know what you’re talking about. That would make the pod MUCH less enjoyable for this listener 🙂

    Re: MLS – I know I’m a new fan, but this breakdown of all the remaining teams’ playoff chances makes my head hurt.

  4. Steve says:

    I really hope they don’t do away with relegation. For me the relegation factor is what makes the EPL great. The tension surrounding the relegation and promotion battles at the end of the season is awesome. How could they even set up the Premier League with no relegation? Would they just pick 20 teams and say “okay these 20 teams are in the top division from now until forever”. With no other clubs having the chance to ever compete in the top division? Because without relegation from the Premier League there would be no promotion from the 2nd division. And why do the big clubs like Liverpool and Man United care about relegation anyway, they are never in danger of being relegated? How does it benefit them to have let’s say West Ham as a permanent member of the top flight but say Birmingham City as a team that can never be promoted?

    I think the system they have in place is fair. In American sports we have no relegation and more revenue sharing. But at the end of the season the same teams are always in last place and none of the fans care about the games. We just say “well they’ll finish in last again, oh well”. Where as if there was relegation the fans would be watching to see if the team weren’t going to be relegated to a lower division. I grew up in Pittsburgh and am a fan of the Pittsburgh Pirates. Every year the Pirates finish in last place (or near the bottom), and the owners have no motivation to make the team any better. They make their money by putting a mediocre team on the field every year and collecting the ticket revenues and the revenues that are shared among the major league baseball clubs. If there were relegation in baseball the Pirates would certainly be in the 3rd or 4th tier by now. It’s the same in every American sport, there are teams that always finish at or near the bottom but whose owners still make lots of money. Which isn’t fair. I say keep the relegation and promotion, keep the collectivism.

  5. Rob says:

    I agree with the relegation battle being a big loss. It’s hard to resist the economic push to have franchises and the ‘increasing share price for share holders’ mentality but I would rather keep the European leagues the way they are in this respect. It is the contest within the contest that I enjoy … some teams are pushing for the championship, some teams are trying to get into the CL, some into the Europa League, some are trying to stave off relegation … it is the exact opposite of MLB … if you’re not one of the few teams in the playoff race, what is the attraction? Sure there are things about the Premier League and other European leagues that could be better, but this isn’t one of them.

  6. Roberto Manita says:

    Was anyone else caught offguard today when the ever stoic Al Pacino actually showed emotion and passion from the sidelines after the Kun goal?

    Note to the Old Rosacea Red Nosed Bastard: Kun is coming to get you come Sunday in the Old Toilet. There’s gonna be a changing of the guard this season Old Gum Chewer. And it starts Sunday at the Old Toilet.

    Kun is coming. Kun is coming.

  7. Roberto Manita says:

    It’s time to knock you and your ilk off your perch. What goes around, comes around Old Fergie boy.

    Kun’s coming. Kun’s coming …

  8. wengler says:

    I think the most interesting part of a World League would be the fact that home and away fixtures would be all bunched up together. 5 at home and then 5 on the road would just be weird. Also the ability of only 1-2 teams to qualify from a country would lead to calls for all resources to be poured into one team. If that team were to fail to qualify the next year for the World League, then what?

    A side note: Eoin’s jock American accent needs to feature more often.

  9. rdm says:

    Eoin, you really are a good impressionist.

    Top 3
    – Mick McCarthy
    – ‘Arry
    – “The American”

    Keep this up and you may hear from “The Special One” TV!

  10. Soccerlogical says:

    RM – You actually believe Man City will defeat Manyoo at Old Trafford? Fergie has had this derby on his mind since he demolished Arsenal

    PS Big week for Arsenal as their games away to Marseille and home against Stoke will give us a better idea of whether they have the quality and depth to compete with TOT and LIV for that final CL spot.

  11. haha! Henry was the real Talisman of Arsenal and they havent found a replacement yet, I think Cesc was never a true talisman for Arsenal, like RVP great players but not Talismans.
    More than a defensive wall, I think the problem with free kick defenses is the lack of movement.

    Look at corners,
    when I look at Chicarito’s goal against Liverpool , or Real’s 1st goal against Lyon, the key was the offense moving and the defense too slow to change.
    Coaches and players are used to being rigid the problem is movement on offenses and defenses with free kicks and corners.
    I think of Laurent Blanc’s Bordeaux with Chamakh , the amount of movment on free kicks was very proper, all players running to the area.

    I think the liverpool rights idea is foolish, and you set it right, the lack of collectiveness is what hurts la liga and what has strengthened the PL.
    But, this goes to the same call for an to relegation and promotion, by Statian owners. They want to change the PL and people reference the NFL, but they should reference the NBA, MLB, and NHL who should have put in relegation and promotion in their mechanisms.
    NBA and the NHL followed the money to over expand and maintain perenially poor teams. MLB actually has tiers and has never used relegation and promotion.

    that was the best one, “I am going to go over to Qatar” 🙂

    Well, let the quaterfinalists for the UEFA, AFC, CAF, CONMEBOL, and CONCACAF CL’s gain entry into this world league, make the champions leagues the promoting factors into the world league.
    The world club teams can play sides in their domestic leagues, but they must be composed of all developed players and no top paid players.

    To be honest, I think Henry wasnt thinking about him, look at Henry on the pitch, he continually seems pissed at his players.
    He wants to win, and he is frustrated. I am not saying he didnt contact the player, but the referee makes it seem like Henry was trying to hurt the man and a few seconds before all sort of fouls could have been called for a red card.

    The problem with New England is the patriots are so beloved. And, Kraft is so strong in the athletic world up there.

    I think DC will win if they can get in. Tournaments are funny creatures, DC can score, if they can get in that will boost them far, that and also the fact that if they make it they will be at the bottom and that increases their odds of success.
    The MLS Cup playoff final always has a 7th or 8th seed in it in the past few seasons.

    The northwest is really soccer country.And also is poor country for most other sports.
    the mariners, the seahawks, the sonics left, so seattle is really a loser city in any other sport but soccer. But, Seattle is also successful.
    In truth, NYC has the best soccer tradition, the cosmos, the US open cup winners of the pre MLS age. The support of foreign soccer clubs is very strong in NYC, especially italian and english and scottish.
    But, the big problem with Redbulls are one, they are not in NYC but in the metropolitan zone, 2 the history of the new york franchise for mls has been so poor.
    The Metrostars soured MLS in NYC.

    Lille like many french clubs make deals for players, they dont keep star players. YEs they won Ligue 1, but, OL, and OM and PSG are really the clubs that try to maintain top players.

  12. Gus Keri says:


    “the cosmos, the US open cup winners of the pre MLS age”

    The Cosmos never played in the US open cup. They won the NASL title few times.
    The NASL teams didn’t participate in the US open cup.

    “the big problem with Redbulls are one, they are not in NYC but in the metropolitan zone”

    this is not an excuse.
    The Cosmos, during their glorious days, played in the metropolitan zone, too.
    Beside, Many teams which play in smaller markets, like Columbus and Kansas City, went on to win trophies.

  13. Gus, shut my mouth.
    I am flat out wrong in my knowledge of the us open cup history and nasl clubs, but, the redbulls locale is an excuse.

    The cosmos played most of their games in city until the move out to giants staidum but that was a mistake, which the new giants stadium probably suckered them into by way of a deal.. They were not filling up yankee stadium to the point where they needed a larger stadium and there is no bigger team in new york than the yankees. The gridiron is a great sport and the NFL a great league but in new york, the yankees are king, everyone knows this in NYC, everyone. Moreover, before the jets decided to share the new giants stadium, they were thinking of putting a new staidum, in the city, ridiculously hanging off the side of the island. But the point is, being in city was even considered by a big nfl team like the jets who have a huge following in the city. Ask the knicks. the new york knicks have just started righting the ship yet still out profited competition including the la lakers because they are in NYC. it matters gus, it matters. New Yorkers are that egotistical.

    and you seem to agree with my second point that the new york franchise for MLS has soured the city to the team. And, that may be the biggest hurdle. I mean, the western new york flash will become the premiere soccer club in new york if they do a threepeat. The difference between kansas city and columbus compared to new york city is vast. Kansas city and columbus last champions were from MLS. That is not NYC’s case. Cmon Gus. Luckily, Redbulls made the playoffs and will most likely get to the finals, the way the last league cup finals have gone

  14. Gus Keri says:


    I have to admit that, sometimes, I find it hard to follow what exactly you are trying to say.

    I thought you are trying to relate the success of the team on the field to the location.

    If this is true, then your assumption about the Cosmos is totally wrong.

    The Cosmos played 4 seasons within the borders of NY city and won nothing. Even after Pele joined them, they played 2 season in NYC and won nothing.

    Before Pele arrived, they played 2 season in Long Island (Hofstra Stadium) and won one NASL title (1972)

    After they moved to New jersey (Giant Stadium), they won 4 titles in 8 seasons including the first title with Pele in 1977.

    So, 5 titles for the Cosmos won while they were playing in the Metropolitan area. None won while they were playing within the borders of the city.

  15. LA says:

    I think the whole Henri debacle, the Rafa debacle, the struggles for JPA, Beckham, even Robbie perhaps underscores thatthe MLS is becoming a difficult place for these older DP’s to shine; the league is becoming too skillful, fast, and physical for players not in top form and fitness.

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