If the big clubs don’t get their way, they’re going to get their way


Thank the football gods in heaven that Argentina won the 1986 World Cup final, huh folks? Not only did their triumph forever validate the unique talent of Diego Maradona – kids, can i put my canada goose jacket in the dryer think Lionel Messi, only he turned up for major international tournaments, went about his work at authorized canada goose outlet club level without 10 of the best players in the world doing his running for him, and played on pitches like pigsties when GBH was only a yellow-card offence – it also ensured that Karl-Heinz Rummenigge didn’t get his hands on football’s biggest prize. Not that The Fiver had anything against the West Germany striker at the time, but he’s since become the chair of the European Clubs’ Association, and is now agitating buy canada goose jacket australia for a European Super League, because apparently under Big Cup “there is a limit to how much best canada goose jacket for skiing money can be made”. The brazen state of it.

How depressing, though. When those running Big Football consider carefully constructed competition-distorting cash-cows like Big Cup to be no longer fit for purpose, you know there’s serious trouble ahead. You see, Rummenigge and his cronies aren’t happy that piddly old Big Cup can only generate £1.1bn in television revenue per year, while the Super Bowl raises £5.2bn. It looks like a fair old discrepancy between two popular events, doesn’t it, until you remember the Super Bowl doesn’t have exactly the same teams in it, year in, spirit-sapping year out. And the games are usually quite entertaining, providing the Denver Broncos aren’t around to turn them, one way or another, into thundering non-events. But the ECA wants that NFL cash anyway, and they’ve decided that Something Must Be Done PDQ.

“Stagnation means regression!” parped Rummenigge after a meeting of the ECA to discuss the Super League proposal. This isn’t strictly true, of course. If The Fiver understands things correctly, stagnation is the state of remaining still, so if progression means going forward, while buy canada goose jacket toronto regression is the word for moving backwards, then what Rummenigge is describing is merely gression. [0/10. See me – Fiver Ed.] But you get his general point. Which might be why Umberto Gandini, one of Rummenigge’s right-hand men, has also announced a review into the format of Big Cup. He’ll “listen to the main actors of the competition” with a view to either “adjusting many aspects” of it, or simply making “a slight change to the access list”. Sinister noises which suggest that if the big clubs don’t get their way, they’re going to get their way. Sigh. Ah well, fans of level playing fields, never mind: it’s only another 51 weeks and four days until the next Super Bowl.


Join Scott Murray from 7.45pm GMT for hot MBM coverage of Peterborough 3-2 West Brom in their FA Cup fourth-round replay.


1 January: “I want to make it clear that we continue to give our 100% backing to Ronnie Moore as he looks to ensure that results and performances improve during the coming 12 months. Our full faith remains with Ronnie, and I think it’s very important that we try to move away from the reputation of being a club who makes multiple managerial changes” – Hartlepool chairman Gary Coxall with some refreshing long-term thinking.

10 February: “This is an extremely difficult decision but one we feel is right for the football club” – oh.

Photograph: Graham Stuart/Reuters


“Reading the Ice Kings story, it occurred to me that we don’t seem as keen in this country to give particular teams a name as we used to. As far as I can remember, the last one was given to the unbeaten Arsenal side, and that was nicked from Preston. But whether this buy canada goose buying a canada goose jacket online coat online Leicester side win the league or not, they surely deserve a name, so may I suggest The Implausibles? I assume The Fiver is the ultimate arbiter on such matters” – Mark Jelbert.

“How much money was spent in designing the new Premier League logo (yesterday’s Fiver)? It could have been saved by going to the same school-age children who apparently designed the Major League Soccerball logo” – JJ Zucal.

“I can’t help but feel Barry Etheridge should have won yesterday’s prizeless (and still we write in) letter o’the day, since he at least taught me a couple best ideas about canada goose outlet online on pinterest of new German words. Well, it was mostly curiosity, wine and Google Translate, but thanks anyway Barry” – Tristran Morgan.

• Send your letters to the.boss@theguardian.com. And if you’ve nothing better to do you can also tweet The Fiver. Today’s winner of our prizeless letter o’the day is … Mark Jelbert.


Chances are that if you’re reading this tea-timely football email, you’re almost certainly single. But fear not – if you’d like to find companionship or love, sign up here to view profiles of the kind of erudite, sociable and friendly folk who would never normally dream of going out with you. And don’t forget, it’s not the rejection that kills you, it’s the hope.


Sunderland’s Adam Johnson has pleaded more canadagoosesalesus guilty to kissing a 15-year-old schoolgirl after grooming her over the internet. The 28-year-old midfielder admitted one count of sexual activity with a child and one of grooming at Bradford crown court. He denies two other counts of sexual activity with a child and is due to go on trial on Friday.

Jürgen Klopp isn’t best pleased with the officials after Liverpool’s FA Cup exit at West Ham, but at least it leaves them clear for the Milk Cup final. “If you are satisfied with the performance of the referee, write it,” he sighed. “If not, say it. There were a lot of situations that, on a better day, I would say are funny decisions.”

Presumably because he’s fed up with shelling out big notes to watch his beloved Aston Villa and West Ham, renowned football militant David Cameron has promised to look at the rising cost of tickets. “I think there is a problem here when some clubs put up prices very rapidly every year, even though so much of the money for football actually comes from sponsorship, equipment and other sources so I’ll look very carefully,” he lip-serviced.

Hernán Crespo isn’t enjoying Gary Neville’s pain in Spain at all. Oh, our bad, he is. “I’m almost happy for Gary Neville’s troubles at Valencia,” he whooped. “I remember he was too harsh as a TV pundit.”

Rotherham are poised to hire Neil Warnock as manager until the end of the season.

Gary Lineker reckons Arsenal snaffled the wrong Leicester talent-spotter when they persuaded Ben Wrigglesworth to jump ship. “I love how Arsenal nicked the wrong scout,” he howled. “Steve Walsh is the guy who found these players and bought them in.”

And Mido has been fired by Zamalek little more than a month after he took charge of the club for a second time. “I apologise to Zamalek fans for letting them down,” he trilled. “I did my best in my best price canada goose jacket outlet usa online store work from the first minute but I wasn’t lucky.”


Aston Villa boss Rémi Garde gets the treatment in this week’s Gallery. Next: send us your hot takes on China: football’s new moneybags superpower.

Photograph: Big Website reader

After our writers’ prediction of Leicester to finish 19th this season, they’re back, baby! Who will win the Premier League title? Definitely going to be Arsenal now.

Marina Hyde on Premier League ticket prices.

Fans from all 20 Premier League clubs on ticket prices.

Picking out teams of players with place-names from a single country. It can only be The Knowledge.

Quiz time: how well do you know your British managers abroad?

Ed Aarons chews the fat with Watford’s Joel Ekstrand.

Win! Win! Win! We’ve got a pair of (home) tickets to Norwich v West Ham on Saturday up for grabs. It may be worth catching them while you can, reckons Martin Laurence.

Oh, and if it’s your thing … you can follow Big Website on Big Social FaceSpace.


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