International Scepticism

by Nick Weaser

Friday, October 8th, 2010

Here we are again, another b****y international break.

I cannot help but feel that this Premiership season hasn’t yet gained any momentum. It is the most stuttering start to a footballing season for as long as I can remember. Just three weeks into the new season, and the domestic leagues are broken up with a quick-fire demolition double by the same England team that found themselves demolished during the summer; I digress. With these matches complete, fetching a lower viewer rating than ‘Strictly Come X Factor’ along the way, the season begins once more. A few juicy fixtures, including Arsenal v Chelsea; some fascinating results, with Arsenal being taken to the cleaners at home to West Brom being a particular highlight; yet, here we are again. Just a single month later, and the England squad are back, playing a country with which I have absolutely no hope of sticking a pin into a map to locate. When does this season seriously begin?

It may be that I am a restless Queens Park Rangers, keen to keep our run of form going whilst the momentum is with us. Yet I feel that it is more than that. I absolutely love it when the league begins once more; I get a real excitement in my stomach when the first whistle is blown. The summer laboriously drags on when there is no football to watch, and quite frankly, the World Cup in South Africa was no substitute for what is notoriously the best league in the world. Thus these international breaks only serve to act as mere reminders of what a bad footballing summer the year 2010 was, and merely rejuvenate that longing pain to see Drogba’s miserable face, Chamakh’s ridiculous hair, and Holloway’s hilarious interviews, once more.

Less international, more domestic. Long live the English football league.

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  • stevie

    so what happens when we have a winter break?

    It’s a massive Euro qualifier, not a friendly, what are they supposed to do?

  • Nick Weaser

    Play the internationals like they do in Rugby Union; the big players leave to play international, and the domestic league continues as per normal.

    Yes, the big teams will suffer as a result, with more international players leaving, but it has worked in rubgy union, the table-topping teams have just had to deal with it and play on nonetheless. It would be a real test of a squads depth.

    As for the Championship, what is the point in not playing their fixtures when quite frankly, only a couple of teams are really going to feel any sort of depletion of their team thanks to the internationals. There is no question that their fixtures could continue.

  • Adam Webster

    Nick, that is a brilliant idea – in theory.

    The reality would be that it would lead to the bigger clubs stock-piling more world-class players, as they don’t want to weaken their playing squads, and so you get a greater disproportionate league.

  • dexylongshot

    Yeah it would never happen. The Premiership holds all the dosh, did anyone see that Lineker Programme last week about England and the hope we might someday win the World Cup? We are one of the only leagues that don’t have a break mid way through the season. I have to disagree with the other point though. The 3 Lions squad need as much time as possible to play together whether it be Qualifiers or Friendlies. I’d love to see the mid season break idea put in place with an England get together. No actual international games but just a chance to get a large squad together with Fabio and go through light training, tactics, videos. This would also insure that the greedy Prem suits wouldn’t try to exploit the break with moneyspinners in Dubia, Asia etc. I’ll believe it when i see it though.

  • Adam Webster

    Dexy, you put your finger on it – the problem with football is money.

    It’s no longer a sport – it’s a business.

    Until the financial bubble bursts, it will remain that way. Not until Liverpool, Man City and Chelsea go under will anything change.

    I, for one, would rather watch a non-league game than a Premiership game. More affordable for a start!

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