The [Horribly Unpopular] Soccer Thread

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bkboiler

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The customer never decides which product to produce, at which price to sell etc. The customer never was the boss. Nor the fan. The shareholder is he who puts the money. He should be the boss, but isn't. The boss is UEFA. UEFA doesn't put the capital, doesn't make the work, but makes all decisions.
agreed, clubs were very out of touch to think the customer wanted this...or knew what the customer wanted but didn't care.
Knew that UEFA or FIFA wouldn't approve, but didn't care.
Reminds me of a quote from the movie Judge Dredd, "I AM THE LAW!"
 
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The customer never decides which product to produce, at which price to sell etc. The customer never was the boss. Nor the fan. The shareholder is he who puts the money. He should be the boss, but isn't. The boss is UEFA. UEFA doesn't put the capital, doesn't make the work, but makes all decisions.
I learned business differently Birro...
The first responsibility of a business is to its shareholders (or owners). If no one owns the business, there is no business. If my $1000 in the bank earns 2.75%, maybe I'll buy a share of X Corp that might bring 4.75%. If it brings me 0, I will dump it. If I think it will bring me 15% in both good times and bad, I have probably been drinking too much of my own beer,
The second responsibility of a business is to its customers. Give them a good product at the right price or shutter the place. If there is no revenue, there is no business.
The third responsibility is to employees and staff. Get the best you can at the price you can afford. Don't hire Modric if you can't afford Modric. But hire the right marketing person and maybe next year revenue will increase.

My point is that your customers maybe sort of kind of would buy or not buy Super League, but they do indeed buy a chance at the league championship and Champions league entry. So thats' what you sell to honor your first and third obligations. Without fans, you have nothing.
 

Birrofilo

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@soccerdad

A firm produces a product because they think there is a market for the product. There is no responsibility for customers whatsoever. You can build bicycles, and then you decide to move into cars. You can ditch the bicycle business and concentrate on cars. The fact that your customers say "hey I liked your bicycles" doesn't matter to the business. The Scuderia Ferrari might abandon Formula 1 tomorrow and concentrate on endurance races and the fans would have no part in this. (Both are not "sports" if we have to believe the recent ideas expressed by many, not to mention Formula E). Or could create, with other teams, a separate championship and it would be normal. Fans wouldn't object.

Remember all those football clubs were born without fans. When they became businesses, the thing that matter is selling the product, overall. Fans are not special, in this respect, they give no more than distant Chinese TV viewers. They are all customers. If they want to see the show, they pay. If they don't want, they don't pay. It's easy and it has always been this way. You get no right of vote because you go to the stadium.

A firm does what is in their interest. Good post-sale service is in the interest of the firm because it builds reputation, not for moral reasons. Fidelity to a style of beer is in the interest of the brewery because it exploits the reputation of the beer, not because beer enthusiasts like it. The bottom line is what matters.

A few hundreds fans, probably belonging to the scum of the bleachers (the "Vikings" in the case of Juventus), never had the possibility to change clubs' decisions. Those clubs are in troubled waters, Covid created huge holes in their accounts. Fans don't realize that Clubs do go bankrupt. Money made them change decisions much more likely. Tottenham was among the firmest supporters of the project, and changed their mind in half an hour.

In any case, truth be told, it's not important for those Clubs if they lose 10% of the supporters, who wake up one morning and discover that this is professional sport. For the Clubs the important is that they get the money by selling the product all over the world.

@bkboiler

What FIFA and UEFA think has nothing to do with Clubs decisions. FIFA and UEFA do not own Clubs.
 

Qhrumphf

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Business owners matter in the same sense that money matters- only because we think they do and an authority that tries to enforce it. Its not who "puts the money" who really matters. It's who puts the *labor*. As with all businesses, what the owner wants means f*** all the instant the employees withhold labor. The club owner is nothing without the players and staff. And then the fans/customers secondary to that. Those two factors are perfectly capable of running the club without the owner. Owners power is solely by fiat (just as money is). They're fundamentally parasites.

And then, in the case of football, players ultimately come and go. Owners can just go. Let the fans dictate the direction of the clubs, 100%.

I don't care at all for what some billionaire thinks he can make off of a club older than his grandfather. Football belongs to the people.

In my ideal world, at least.

(Perhaps at this point you've got me sussed as a St. Pauli supporter as well lol)
 

Birrofilo

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@Qhrumphf

I don't want to enter into this economic-political-philosophical discussion of the relationship between capital and labour. Many wars have been fought for that.

Let's say that what you call the "parasites" risk the billions, and what you call the "employees", in this football world, earn scandalous salaries and bear no risk (if we except the bankruptcy of the "parasite", but they will find another contract).

In all this, I don't see how the fans should decide anything.

Football doesn't belong to people at all.

As a Juventus fan, I understand I have no weight in any decision, nor should I have it. I love the colours. I trust the captain of the ship, which is not my ship just because I love it.
 

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Whats made me laugh in all this ESL hyperbole, is that football, in its present state, was somehow worth defending. What a crock. My immediate reaction to the ESL announcement was, "who really gives a toss?" Game is so far removed from your average joe, its not funny.

I mean, i was born in Liverpool, and lived there till the 80s. Even while living there, it was pretty extravagant to go to the match, in terms of ticket cost, but it was affordable. My club was essentially made up of British lads, with a smattering of foreign talent, maybe 2-3 non Brits in the squad. All league games kicked off at 3 every saturday. Might have been a midweek european match, or cup replay. 42 games a season, and up to 50-60 if you remained in decent cup runs. FA cup was a prestigious trophy, and if you won it, youd be heralded as one of the best teams in the land. Rightly or wrongly.

Today, liverpool might kick off on saturday just 3-4 times a year. Hardly ever at 3 pm. No one gives a crap about the fa cup and league cup. Liverpool have 3-4 brits in their squad, a foreign manager, and ownership. Television rights demand they play at a unique hour, so that their commericial worldwide support can be optimized. You cant get into matches simply by walking up to the ground. You have to be a registered fan. Sit in your seat. Take selfies all day with out of town fans, who can afford executive class ticket packages, buy one of 4 team shirts that change each month, and essentially soften much of the boisterous atmosphere in the ground.

The perception of many footy fans today, that of the media covering it, and the EPL promotes, is that football actually started in 1992. Everything we talk about is EPL records this that and the other. As if Jimmy Greaves never existed with his 350 plus league goals. Alan Shearer holds the scoring record in many young kids eyes.

How has the EPL been good for developing even British football, when it is more a showcase for foreign lads who taught us all to cheat and dive around? Today, cheating is an accepted component of the game. There is no respect, sportsmanship, despite what the armbands say. It is not that it is wrong to have foreign content grace the game either, but what other country has allowed it to overtake their game, to such an extent. "English" premier league - a supposed national sport - is only that because of geography. Not content.

Im pretty sure my club has been no beacon of light for English football, and the truth is, most local Liverpool fans have little in common with the club they support, despite their fervour for the club, and how the recent ESL debacle transpired. Football is money is football. Been that way for 30 years. Its up for sale to the highest bidder. Chelsea bough some of it, and now its Man City's turn. PSG? I mean, the french may have won the world cup, but their league is a joke. Spanish league? 2 horsed race with both front runners mired in massive debt. FIFA, EUFa etc, are a bunch of corrupt brown baggers, that see fit to run world cups in Dubai, and ignore obvious fair play shenanigans of money clubs like city and psg. Liverpool are not better than many.

The point of all the rambling is that football has already become a financial farce, and that we probably needed this sort of fan reaction when some joker came along and suggested the premier league in 1992, Instead, the game as we knew it was sold. In a nutshell, English football exists outside the premier league, in lower and local leagues. The top division is hollywood dross,
 
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Birrofilo

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The point of all the rambling is that football has already become a financial farce, and that we probably needed this sort of fan reaction when some joker came along and suggested the premier league in 1992, Instead, the game as we knew it was sold.
Actually, I think "this sort of reaction" happened exactly because the fans do not understand that football "has already become a financial farce". People reacted as if we were in the 1970'.

I don't think it's a farce, it is sport-businss, not unlike cyclism, or Formula 1, which underwent this kind of evolution many years ago. Teams are not "natonal", and in the case of Formula 1 seats are mostly very expensive (unless you stay 2 hours standing in muddy grass under the rain).

It is not any more the football of when I was a child, either. Times change, but all change is driven by demand, there is no conspiracy. When I was a child, all teams played at the same time. We listened the matches at the radio, and we might have bet with the Totocalcio, the only allowed footbal betting game of the time.

But people wanted to see the matches at the TV, and they wanted to see all important matches. And a lot of people like to make small bets on football matches. One of the consequences is that the horse-racing industry nearly died in Italy. Times change, but it's the result of demand.
 

Nubiwan

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Actually, I think "this sort of reaction" happened exactly because the fans do not understand that football "has already become a financial farce". People reacted as if we were in the 1970'.

I don't think it's a farce, it is sport-businss, not unlike cyclism, or Formula 1, which underwent this kind of evolution many years ago. Teams are not "natonal", and in the case of Formula 1 seats are mostly very expensive (unless you stay 2 hours standing in muddy grass under the rain).

It is not any more the football of when I was a child, either. Times change, but all change is driven by demand, there is no conspiracy. When I was a child, all teams played at the same time. We listened the matches at the radio, and we might have bet with the Totocalcio, the only allowed footbal betting game of the time.

But people wanted to see the matches at the TV, and they wanted to see all important matches. And a lot of people like to make small bets on football matches. One of the consequences is that the horse-racing industry nearly died in Italy. Times change, but it's the result of demand.
Not takling about F1 or cyclng which few people care about compared to football. Those sports lend themselves to the remote viewer. Football is very much more local. The local fan has been squeezed out of football. All in the name of this demand your seem to think exists, or makes it somehow better. The demand comes from people not even associated with clubs they support. Armchair fans. This football era hasnt improved the sport.

Football is a farce among world sports. People laugh at the antics of football players and sporting bodies alike. Yeah, sure it commands financial respect, but demand has not made it better to watch. Cheating players acting like fairies when they get a knock, playing for financial cheating clubs. Corrupt organizations that run the sporting bodies.

Football it there to be bought by the highest bidder. Chelsea - PSG - Man City - Real - Barcelona? None of thees clubs able to bank role their players through normal avenues, yet allowed to do as they please. A world cup hosted in Dubai! Pleases. Its a joke. Show me the improvement above and beyond a wider televison audience, and more money? More corruption.

Nothing good about the state of football. I frankly do not care. I have nothing in common with my home town team, and watch mor out of fleeting interest. I actually pay closer attention to F1 ironically.
 

Birrofilo

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Not takling about F1 or cyclng which few people care about compared to football. Those sports lend themselves to the remote viewer. Football is very much more local.
[...]
I actually pay closer attention to F1 ironically.
In Italy cycling is the second most practised sport (at all levels) and is probably the second most viewed sport in television. It's a national passion second only to football. And yet, since the mist of times, the most important competitions are private tournaments.

I don't understand why you see F1 as a "cleaner" sport (or sport-business) than football. There is all sort of cheating even there, and "referees" can heavily influence a result (even more after the introduction of the "pace car"). Second pilots are often chosen for the sponsor they bring, or the TV public they bring, not for merit. F1 races are organized in the Arabic peninsula (Bahrein, and possibly also Qatar in the future) as well, and nobody complains about labour exploitation. You cannot normally go and see it, it's for rich people. And there is no second league to be relegated to. And it's not local at all. It really is like the Superleague.

But football was different when we were children, so that we don't recognize it any more, while F1 was this way since its inception (and actually before, talking about that kind of competitions) so it is considered "normal".

Local football can be followed regardless of what happens in professional football.
 

Nubiwan

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In Italy cycling is the second most practised sport (at all levels) and is probably the second most viewed sport in television. It's a national passion second only to football. And yet, since the mist of times, the most important competitions are private tournaments.

I don't understand why you see F1 as a "cleaner" sport (or sport-business) than football. There is all sort of cheating even there, and "referees" can heavily influence a result (even more after the introduction of the "pace car"). Second pilots are often chosen for the sponsor they bring, or the TV public they bring, not for merit. F1 races are organized in the Arabic peninsula (Bahrein, and possibly also Qatar in the future) as well, and nobody complains about labour exploitation. You cannot normally go and see it, it's for rich people. And there is no second league to be relegated to. And it's not local at all. It really is like the Superleague.

But football was different when we were children, so that we don't recognize it any more, while F1 was this way since its inception (and actually before, talking about that kind of competitions) so it is considered "normal".

Local football can be followed regardless of what happens in professional football.
I never ever said F1 was clean. Merely that i am more compelled to watch that product, than the game i loved as a boy. F1 has always been the purview of the rich and famous. Monaco etc. as you said. Hence the irony. There is no deceipt attempted in F1. It is what it is. I think football tries to pretend its still there for the people. Its not. Its a corrupt money racquet, for sale to the highest bidder. Brown bag enterprise.

I think any sport activity, at grass roots can be more compelling than at the professional level. See college football in the us versus the NFL offering. It is still nice to see professionals do it at high pace, and with skill. Ice hockey being a fine example of both grass roots excitment, and the professional game being fast and highly skilled, for anyoen ever skated, or tried to play it. Football loses something at the professional level at times, and the entire scope of the financial direction it has taken has left a fair few people disenchanted, i would suggest. Enough is enough for many.
 
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bkboiler

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I'm an armchair fan, I support the San Marino national team...
Just kidding.
Across all sport types and levels, competitions are segregated by ability and governed to limit arms-races. F1 is a perfect example. Physics does not necessarily limit the car's ability as much as the regulations do.
As long as teams with the financial means such as Manchester United are allowed to compete in the same league as Sheffield (for example), you'll have an unsporting exhibition.
Unfortunately for the love of the game...it's further regulation that brings teams such as this onto an equal playing field and prevents the board rooms from deciding the match rather than the locker rooms.
 

Nubiwan

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Actually, I think "this sort of reaction" happened exactly because the fans do not understand that football "has already become a financial farce". People reacted as if we were in the 1970'.

I don't think it's a farce, it is sport-businss, not unlike cyclism, or Formula 1, which underwent this kind of evolution many years ago. Teams are not "natonal", and in the case of Formula 1 seats are mostly very expensive (unless you stay 2 hours standing in muddy grass under the rain).

It is not any more the football of when I was a child, either. Times change, but all change is driven by demand, there is no conspiracy. When I was a child, all teams played at the same time. We listened the matches at the radio, and we might have bet with the Totocalcio, the only allowed footbal betting game of the time.

But people wanted to see the matches at the TV, and they wanted to see all important matches. And a lot of people like to make small bets on football matches. One of the consequences is that the horse-racing industry nearly died in Italy. Times change, but it's the result of demand.
@Birrofilo just curious what percentage of Series A team's players are Italian. Id be betting it is a higher proportion of those who are English in the "English" equivalent. Same if i asked a Spaniard, German or Frenchman.

I looked it up....... EPL is 36 % English. Serie A 39% Italian. France, Germany and Spain all hover around 50% home talent. Which countries are the most successful in recent years?

The premier league is all about money, yet somehow pretends its promoting football, for England. Does nothing good for English football.
 
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Birrofilo

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@Nubiwan

True. When I was a boy I followed Formula 1 very keenly. It goes without saying, my colours were uniform red. Well, at that time, basically the only Italian top person in the team was the chief engineer Forghieri. Later, not even that. Not one pilot, not the chief engineer. There was a very brief parenthesis with pilot Alboreto, and then again other 20-30 years of foreign drivers and engineers. Since last year there is an Italian chief engineer again, Binotto. I think the last Italian pilot was Alboreto who was in Ferrari in 1984 - 1988.

Yet, I do see Ferrari as an Italian team as I always did. Sport is not something entirely rational, and rooting for is even less rational.

Until recently, Juventus always had around 5/11 of players in the field who were Italians. Other teams, such as Inter and Milan - especially Inter - in certain cases had not one Italian player in the team, barring a youngster in the bleachers. Yet, I always continued to see it as an Italian team. Just like I see Manchester United as a British team.

When I was a child, there were no foreign players allowed. 100% of the teams were made of Italians.

Things change. I see football as the Formula 1 logic applied to the ball. Many things have changed since I was a child. "Rooting for" remains firm.
 

Qhrumphf

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Sounds like some punishment from UEFA coming down. Juve, Real, and Barca haven't abandoned the Super League and will likely get the book thrown at them. The other 9 who backed away getting more modest punishment with accepting major punishment if they try again.

The Italian FA can now boot breakaway clubs. The English FA hasn't announced anything yet but I expect the same.

Rot in hell Super League.
 

Birrofilo

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I am not aware of any change in the rules of FIGC or UEFA, so there is no infraction so far of any code of conduct. When and if those changes are implemented, they will only be valid for the future.

UEFA behaves more and more like organized crime. There's a judge in Berlin!
 

Qhrumphf

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Cool. Juventus can leave, lose their champions league revenue, and all the other benefits that come with involvement in the various federations, and fold. What with only belonging to the owners and not their fans as it should be, is their right. Bye.
 

Birrofilo

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If one thinks that "sport" belongs to just one federation, it is he who is out of touch. Sport is sport. Football is football regardless of the tournament being organized by UEFA, FIFA, FIGC.

Besides, those organizations will probably violate EU rules about freedom of competition if they take measures (in this case, even blackmailing sanctions for no violations of rules) in order to prevent competition from happening. They want a "monopoly" which is allegedly illegal to try to maintain. This will be soon judged by some judges. In the meanwhile, such organizations have been warned to abstain from any measures which tries to protect the monopoly or to intimidate the independent clubs. There is a sentence by a Spanish judge which binds them all to wait for the matter to be judged in front of a proper court. The only thing we can do, is to wait for this judgement.

All those attempt by UEFA and FIGC (FIFA has already changed attitude) to limit the freedom of the clubs are at the moment illegal (if and when they result in actual "punishments") and will be dealt with by in the relevant court.

I am not worried at all by UEFA and FIGC. I am worried by the shameless betrayal of the project by the perfidious flip-flop British clubs and the possibility of a new attempt in the future, if this is the quality of their management. Certainly something must change in the way foot-ball is organized at UEFA level. Certainly the change can have a different shape than private tournaments, naturally, but private tournaments ARE an option on the table (another option is an "Europa league", we will see).

The equivalent of the Superleague exists in European basket and, for what I read, is working very well. And nobody in the basket world cried "foul" and "betrayal" and "scandal".

EDIT: Juventus will never "fold" because they have a large and faithful, and intelligent supporter base, unlike certain British clubs.
 
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Qhrumphf

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Brother Juve Real and Barca are operating financially unsustainably are drowning in debt. They needed this money. And that's why they're still clinging to it for dear life.

If you can't see this for what it is, there's no point engaging any further with you on it.
 

Birrofilo

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Brother Juve Real and Barca are operating financially unsustainably are drowning in debt. They needed this money. And that's why they're still clinging to it for dear life.

If you can't see this for what it is, there's no point engaging any further with you on it.
Brother, you should understand we live in difficult times.
Juve, Real, Barça and many other teams had an investment level which was perfectly compatible with their normal revenue turnaround.
Then Covid arrived.
Revenues had a sharp decline for two years, and are quite jeopardized also for the next season, but the cost structure is rigid (it's all contracts and players are not very keen in re-negotiating their pay, after all they play the same and risk their legs in the same way) and this created a serious problem for several teams.

It should be noted that, in the Italian championships, teams like Roma and Lazio have higher debts than Juventus, and they have generally less chances to make revenues from UEFA competitions (although they do make usually a lot of money with merchandising and stadium tickets, they do suffer from the Covid situation. Actually, Roma and Lazio probably suffer more, as they have a larger proportion of their revenues coming from the tickets).

That said, Juventus, Barça, Real Madrid and some other teams in Europe, not just British and Spanish and Italian, are asking a new formula since at least 20 years or more. I was young when the project of a private tournament was floated around by many European clubs, Juventus included. It's something that was "immanent" since basically ever. What happened this year was simply that the Covid crisis somehow was a catalyser of this inevitable process. Some people got tired of waiting forever. Then, some of those people made a shameless about-face, they threw the stone and then hid their arm, as the Italian saying goes.

The process is not over. I deem it likely that, in some form or other, this project will resurface, either as a private tournament, or as a total restructuring of the UEFA competitions, which are bloated and ineffective from a business point of view.

UEFA, as it is now, it's a total failure from a business/entertainment point of view, which is important for all major clubs and for the entire industry. It's no chance that Cycling, Formula 1, Basket do use private tournaments (those are the sports at, at world level, constitute the most diffused form of entertainment). European Football, as I repeat, is more of an exception than the rule.
 
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Kharnynb

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The issue with the superleague isn't so much that it's competing with uefa(few of us care about that) it's the whole "we started it, so we can't ever be out of it" part.
All other leagues, you can get demoted if you **** up. but it would be beyond daft that arsenal or ****ing spurs would forever be in the top league just cause they can't be demoted/lose their spot for a year.
 

Qhrumphf

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The issue with the superleague isn't so much that it's competing with uefa(few of us care about that) it's the whole "we started it, so we can't ever be out of it" part.
All other leagues, you can get demoted if you **** up. but it would be beyond daft that arsenal or ****ing spurs would forever be in the top league just cause they can't be demoted/lose their spot for a year.
And that's precisely why we know this is solely a cash grab by the clubs involved.

But yes. This. Some undeserving clubs (Spurs, Arsenal) get theirs while all the other clubs and other countries get f***ed.
 

Birrofilo

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The issue with the superleague isn't so much that it's competing with uefa(few of us care about that) it's the whole "we started it, so we can't ever be out of it" part.
All other leagues, you can get demoted if you **** up. but it would be beyond daft that arsenal or ****ing spurs would forever be in the top league just cause they can't be demoted/lose their spot for a year.
I certainly understand this reasoning. In fact, that's the weak point. But then, those who organize the tournament, normally want to be in. This can be overcome in two ways:

a) UEFA organizes a "Europa league", which comprises around 20 top teams (to be qualified according to certain UEFA rules) and which lasts from September to May. The teams which participate in the Europa league do not participate in the national leagues. That would make sense for the needs of the major EU teams, but UEFA will not do that because that would damage the national federations;

b) A private subject, independently of the teams, organizes a tournament. The private subject will either operate on an invitation basis (as it happens in cycling) or on a different basis and will make some preselections.

What matters, for the teams, is that the income from the participation to the tournament is known in advance. You cannot plan investments if your income depends on a couple of games.

One of the serious problems with the Champions League is that one cannot really make a serious investment plan.
 
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Excuse me fellow Americans but if you want to argue with Chelsea manager Tuchel about how and when he plays Pulisic, you are too full of horse$hit to even join the conversation. Tuchel has been one of the hottest managers in football since he took over at Chelsea. Pulisic has been a true super sub off the bench. Enough said. If you want to argue with somebody, ask Guardiola why he left Aguero off the field as long as he did when things weren't going their way.
 

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this euro championship is full of surprises, portugal, spain and france are all firing on less than all cylinders so far.
My hometeam(netherlands) is doing okay, but we're lacking a good forward with depay not in topform and missing van dijk in defense will hurt us against bigger teams.
 
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Only 3 teams out of 24 with 6 points after 2 games .. And the Dutch are one of the 3. Not France, not England, not Portugal, not Spain ..
 

Kharnynb

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Savonlinna
Only 3 teams out of 24 with 6 points after 2 games .. And the Dutch are one of the 3. Not France, not England, not Portugal, not Spain ..
we had an easy group, but the team is pretty decent, short of some solidity in defence and a fit and sharp forward. our midfield on the other hand is as good as it gets.
 
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If I were to pick an #all eleven# from Euro 2020, I think I would pick Raheem Stirling first. I'm raising a glass of stout to him as his side enjoys a 1-0 halftime lead over UKR.
 
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