D.he makers behind the European Super League must have suspected that their idea would stir up many football fans emotionally, and that they could face widespread rejection. But the extent of the indignation that has spread, especially in England since the announcement of the new competition late on Sunday evening, may have amazed one or the other.
It all started with Gary Neville, who used to play for Manchester United and now works as a television expert for “Sky”. In a live monologue he talked himself into a rage: He spoke of greed, he called the plans disgusting, he demanded harsh penalties for the English clubs involved, including his former employer: “Honestly, you have to crush it.” Millions of people watched the video of his angry outburst and he did not stay alone for long. Danny Murphy, like Neville a former professional, told the BBC that the concept of the Super League was “soulless”: 15 of the 20 participating clubs did not have to qualify for it, but were automatically seeded and could not be relegated.
This shows that the owners of England’s breakaway Big Six clubs, Liverpool, Manchester United, Manchester City, Chelsea, Arsenal and Tottenham, are not interested in a sporting competition, but only in maximizing economic profit: “This is a complete one Lack of understanding of our game, our traditions – what we love about football and what is in our hearts when we play or watch the game. “
Organized fan groups of the clubs involved in the plans made public statements against the owners. In Liverpool, the Spirit of Shankly group was “horrified” by the US owner company Fenway Sports Group (FSG) around the investor John W. Henry, who is said to be one of the driving forces behind the Super League: “The FSG has the fans ignored in their relentless and greedy pursuit of money. Football is ours, not theirs. Our club is ours, not theirs. ”In London, Chelsea fans spoke of the“ ultimate betrayal ”, while Arsenal supporters announced the death of their club as a sports club. However, the fans do not have a say in this because their clubs are not member associations. They can only get involved in supporters’ trusts, which hold small shares in the respective clubs, but whose actual influence is limited in many places.
Johnson wants to prevent the Super League
The reactions reach into politics. Prime Minister Boris Johnson announced that everything would be done to prevent the Super League in its now announced form. The BBC also wrote with a view to the further development and upcoming discussions would be “fascinating”, because the six English clubs have already had a solid “public relations battle”. “There was no consultation with the fans,” wrote the Guardian, and there was not even an open letter before the official announcement on Sunday: “Your opinions are not sought and they definitely do not matter.” The fans, like that the calculation, can hate the competition as long as they still pay for it. “It’s time to choose a side.”
Football fans in England have long felt robbed. Their clubs are no longer their clubs, but assets of the super-rich. And the clubs no longer need the fans, because the revenue at the turnstiles has degenerated into pocket money for them compared to the billions in pay-TV skimmed off from subscribers around the world. Many fans can often no longer even afford the expensive tickets, but the clubs don’t care either, because they prefer to attract tourists who stroll through the megastore before the game to stock up on souvenirs that are cheaply produced and sold at high prices. Long-established fans tend not to do that because they already have a ten, fifteen, twenty year old scarf in club colors. They can then wear it in the pub while their team plays a few streets away.
It was only in October of last year that the Big Six clubs tried to expand their power within the Premier League: The so-called “Project Big Picture” was supposed to give them a high status when voting. It failed. And now the Super League. The concept is not new, the idea has been smoldering more or less hidden under the surface for years. Many fans who are now protesting against it are probably not at all about the unfair and unsporting format or the open power struggle with Uefa – after all, this is not undisputed among fans. It’s a holistic unease, the realization that football hasn’t belonged to them for a long time. “Enough is Enough” read a banner from angry Liverpool fans: enough is enough. For those who want to push through the Super League against all odds, this has never been true.
#Englands #football #fans #angry