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Silly idea

The other year the Premier League came up with the flat-out stupid idea of Game 39, the extra game in the season that would finally do away with the notion that football clubs, at whatever level they play come from somewhere, and that their location means something profound both to the local communities and the supporters, who by and large either come from or have roots in the area. Even in the cynical money-obsessed times we live in it was laughed out of town, leaving Richard Scudamore to run back to Castle Greyskull with his tail between his legs.

Despite this the Premier League hasn’t learned from this and has come up with yet another harebrained scheme to generate a few more quid for themselves, this time in the form of a play-off for the fourth Champions League spot. The idea was, according to The Guardian, presented during the most recent meeting of all the clubs, during which the top four clubs disapproved, while the others were all excited about the opportunity to play in the money spinning Champions League. Should it happen it would involve the teams that finshed from fourth to seventh. The play-off system was tried out in Holland but scrapped in 2008 after worries about crowd violence.

The League is concerned that the current monopoly the so-called Big Four have on the places is damaging the league, but has no plans to tackle the root problems (unequal distribution of TV and prize money, which has meant the rich get richer and the poor get poorer, while the lower divisions and grass roots starve), instead adding a tacky end of season TV jamboree that further devalues the validity of the league campaign. Hooray for modern football eh?

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