Folks who don’t follow EPL soccer probably don’t understand why English Premier League fans are so upset.
There is a pyramid system in Euro football that’s been in place for many, many years. Its like the minor leagues in baseball, except rather than an individual player being able to move up (or down) to teams permanently at the major league or AAA or AA levels, ENTIRE TEAMS move up or down in terms of what level–or league–they play in. It is possible for a football club to be, say, 2 leagues away from the top league…do well…and be moved to a higher league. if they do well in that league…they can be moved to a higher league again. Manchester City–maybe the best club team in the world right now (a fact which grieves me and Swine) is an actual example of a lower division club being promoted to higher leagues and eventually becoming a power. (Yes…influx on $ played a huge role ).
The idea of a local club having the opportunity to move up in terms of their league is simply integral to the European game. I think its important to remember that there are no real collegiate sports teams…not like we know them. Whereas in our country “regional” sports loyalties are often associated with universities…in England its all about the football clubs. Every town and city has one. And…again…the idea is that ANY team, from a philosophical standpoint…can play with the big boys.
The FA Cup is an actual tournament in which exactly that happens.
The Super League would have done away with this. There would have been a set number of teams…the wealthiest teams, frankly…that would have been in a permanent league of their own. It would have totally blown up that system. Yes…those teams would have still played their domestic leagues…but the current merit based Champions league would have been killed. Plus, the massive influx of money for those Super League clubs would probably have made them untouchable on the pitch by less rich clubs.
One way for an Arkansas fan to understand would be if, say, Bama, Ohio State, etc. etc. formed a football league of their own. Say, the “top” 15-20 college teams. And left out the likes of the Hogs. Or Oklahoma State. Or South Carolina. We wouldn’t like it. We all remember our glory days, and relish the thought…the chance…that our beloved team could improve, beat those “top” teams and someday with the national championship.
And when decisions are being made by owners that often don’t really understand the euro football culture…it ticks people off. I applaud peaceful protests…but now as I write they have started vandalizing. Don’t approve of that.