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Exclusive – Chris Waddle Says Something Interesting

10 years ago

Watching Newcastle’s match last night I nearly fell off my seat when Chris Waddle said something interesting and no, it wasn’t his usual ‘pelanty’ obsession.

Waddle and the commentator got onto the subject of how English teams almost exclusively played weakened teams throughout the rounds, whereas in almost every other country treated the Europa League with a lot more respect/interest/commitment.

After a brief discussion, Chrissie came up with the conclusion that the consequences of relegation are so severe in England, with subsequent loss of TV money, compared to other countries and so unless something changes the competition is always going to be approached in a half-hearted way by teams from the English Premier League.

He has a point.

The TV money in England has so skewed the game that bizarrely, the more money that comes into clubs the less effort they will put into trying to win something! That is the vast majority of clubs who know winning the title is just not going to happen.

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Unfortunately, it is hard to see things changing because with the TV money it means every club has £40m minimum from TV this season, which will go up to at least £60m per team next season with the new renegotiated worldwide TV deals. So basically there no longer any penniless club sat the bottom who cant afford transfer fees or wages, equalling up to a dozen clubs can feel totally immune to any possible whiff of relegation.

Instead we have an ultra competitive league where there are no real sure things on any particular weekend, with overall maybe only four or five clubs being totally confident that relegation worries could never scar their seasons.

Maybe the answer is that a bit like giving clubs involved in Europe a bye in the early round of the Capital One (League) Cup, could teams involved in the Europa League get some kind of ‘Get Out Of Jail’ card? Whereby if they went all out for the Europa League and ended up in a relegation fight, they could be immune from relegation that particular season?

It might be crazy but unless something is done, the clubs who aren’t regularly involved in the Champions League will never have big enough squads to really go for the Europa League in the way they should.

Alternative solutions on a postcard please.

(If you would like to feature like David on our/your website, get writing, ‘The Blog’ is where we profile contributions from anybody who has something to say)



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