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Best League in the world? Perhaps not

May 25, 2009

If the measure of that are the performances of the English teams in the Champions League, then perhaps they should be. But considering that all the big four rely on non-Englishmen like Ronaldo, Torres, Drogba and everyone in Arsenal, the real measure should be the teams below them.

And they fail…. miserably!

In a week thats dominated by news whether Sir Alex will start with the B team against Hull, it is presumptuous to think that Newcastle and Boro would have won their respective games against Villa and West Ham. As it turns out, the game between United and Hull was meaningless, as the Geordie nation got the reality check I’ve said they needed since this blog came to life, and boring Boro were finally shipped to the Championship. Hull stay up, in big part due to their early season form, and Sunderland too, leaving them as the best club from the North East. Newcastle fans will find it very hard to live that one down.

All the teams that needed to win, or get some form of result, all conspired to lose their games. Fulham, needing a win to ensure Europa qualification, lost to a ‘weakened’ Everton team supposedly ‘resting’ for their FA Cup final showdown next weekend. Spurs, needing a Fulham lost, and win against Liverpool at Anfield, only got a consolation goal from one-time Kop man, Robbie Keane.

Sunderland, Hull, Newcastle and Middlesborough all followed suit, ensuring the table at the start of the day remained the same where it mattered. If this was the true measure of the EPL, then Michel Platini would be laughing in his seat (he probably still is!). While the big four dominate the CL, I shudder to think how any of the other 14 teams, minus Everton and Villa, will do against the rest of Europe’s elite. As it is, I’ll never find out, but I don’t think many of us EPL followers would like to either!

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16 Comments leave one →
  1. May 25, 2009 1:46 am

    lol, we posted at the same time. no worries, i’ll back mine up a few minutes.

    “presumptuous” lol, i like. its kinda sad to see newcastle relegated especially, but i cant wait to see the wholesale of their ‘top’ players!

  2. May 25, 2009 2:44 am

    At least the “Baby Devils” played well and even scored, and the teams relegated cannot have any complain… A little sad to see the toons going down, good team with good players but a bad management, and some lack of fighting spirit

  3. glamourousdiss permalink
    May 25, 2009 1:28 pm

    Next time all teams should fear the baby devils! Judging by their performance, there’s a lot of them that could be loaned out to Birmingham, Hull, and Wolves to play regularly in the BPL!

  4. May 26, 2009 8:34 am

    hehehe i think we covered this is one of our many jibbering podcasts, the strength of a league depends on its depth. So that would mean looking beyond the CL and into the Uefa/europa/whatever it is after the cl.

  5. May 26, 2009 11:10 am

    i think haha… :)

  6. kirku permalink
    May 26, 2009 6:29 pm

    this article makes no sense at all. most european leagues have only 2 clubs that can win the league, then below them a whole bunch of mediocrity. the prem has 4 very strong sides.

    you point reads as such: teams below the premiership top 4 would not compete with europe’s ‘elite’. well done einstein. did you think that up all on your own?

    lets have a look at the 5-7th placed teams

    prem: everton, villa and fulham.
    serie a: genoa, roma, palermo
    la liga: villareal, valencia, depor

    roma and villareal are probably the strongest teams in that group. but roma have had a terrible season (as have valencia) and are no where near as strong as their heritage would suggest. in the spanish and italian top 4 you have such european powerhouses as fiorentina and atletico madrid. lets have a look at them again:

    barca, real, sevilla, atletico

    inter, juve, milan, fiorentina

    or

    man utd, liverpool, chelsea, arsenal

    only barca can compete with the english top 4. as for strongest league- its a premiership whitewash.

  7. May 26, 2009 7:11 pm

    oh snap, einstein.

    what i think glamorousdiss was trying to say is that, last sunday all the ‘meaningful’ matches ended in ‘predictable’ results ie there were no changes at the top and bottom ends of the premier league, the bottom three prior to sunday got relegated in the end and fulham clinched 7th over tottenham hotspur.

    and fyi, kirku. gd is a spurs fan.

    but i think from this season as a whole, the majority of the teams in the premier league are pretty resilient, eg relegated newcastle getting a point at old trafford, 2nd placed liverpool doing the double against champions man utd. maybe if their squads were bigger they could handle the season better, eg end of season burnouts at aston villa.

    but still, week in week out it was a lot harder to predict results this season, even with the poor teams. and that is my excuse for losing the wdkf fantasy league.

  8. glamorousdiss permalink*
    May 26, 2009 8:04 pm

    Well unfortunately for either of us, we will never be able to tell who is better just by comparing the european qualifiers from each league, because thats just as good as saying only Barca can compete with the BPL top 4. There is no basis in that judgement, and my article never had any basis in the first place.

    Case in point. All things being equal, if you ask me who will win if Everton were to play recently crowned German champions Wolfsburg, I will say even game. However, if Everton were playing Werder Bremen today, I will say Bremen, simply because I think they are a better team. But yet, they didn’t qualify for even Europa. And this is from the tiny and uncompetitive Bundesliga no less!

    So just comparing the qualifiers don’t make any sense. Similarly, all our points, yours, mine and williamhill, we will never be able to prove, because its just not possible.

    Last but not least, williamhill was right in saying that my actual point of this article was to point out the inadequacies of all the BPL teams who were supposed to have been fighting for something, but yet none of them got anything. At least I know Wolfsburg won their last game when it mattered =)

    EDIT

    Sorry I had to add this in. If you’re in the Asian region there is a show called Football Focus with a few former players from the English league. Former Liverpool and England player Steve McMahon mentioned that all of last Sunday’s games fell flat because no one took advantage of the situation given. So I am not the only one who thinks that Sunday was very disappointing.

  9. whill permalink
    May 26, 2009 9:05 pm

    ohhh i like where this is going, wonder if kirku will come back and argue his case even more.

  10. kirku permalink
    May 26, 2009 9:09 pm

    What is this BPL you keep referring to? I assume that you are not from Europe and thus are confusing Britain and England. Britain comprises of 4 countries, each with their own league. Thus we have the SPL (Scottish Premier League) and EPL (English Premier League) but no BPL.

    I was commenting on this passage, ‘While the big four dominate the CL, I shudder to think how any of the other 14 teams, minus Everton and Villa, will do against the rest of Europe’s elite. As it is, I’ll never find out, but I don’t think many of us EPL followers would like to either!’ Not the rest of the article. It is this conclusion that makes no sense. It seems to indicate that the EPL is a weaker league because the midtable teams cannot compete with Europe’s ‘elite’. This is nonsensical because by definition midtable teams aren’t even England’s ‘elite’ so why should we compare them to Europe’s?

  11. kirku permalink
    May 26, 2009 9:17 pm

    Also; If the title of the article is, ‘Best League in the world? Perhaps not’ What is the justification for this? Which league do you think is stronger? If there is a perhaps there must be some strong contenders..

  12. glamorousdiss permalink*
    May 26, 2009 10:25 pm

    Sorry once again its the asian thing… EPL is officially english premier league.. but in asia sponsors Barclays Bank decided to name the EPL after themselves and thus us over here interchangeably refer the EPL as BPL i.e. Barclays Premier League. You will find we use that here to refer to the EPL.

    The SPL is rubbish thats for sure. However, I am for the two Glasgow giants to be put into the EPL/BPL one day.

    Ironically, I’d like to believe the EPL is the best league in the world! Because that’s the one which I follow enthusiastically! However it is that expectation that killed my last Sunday. Because I REALLY REALLY thought one of the teams that needed to win, would’ve won! criticising the league i follow is no different from a parent giving their children constructive criticism..

    and i still think Werder Bremen will beat Everton any day! or that Valencia would give Fulham plenty to think about if they were paired in europe!

    Ahh that last conclusion.. all I wanted to point out was how a team like my beloved Spurs, Everton, Fulham will do against the elite of europe… i.e. teams like Barcelona, Real Madrid, Juve, Inter, etc … because even tho they are not England’s elite, if the EPL is the best league in the world, then their 2nd best should put up at least a fight… again going back to Sunday’s game.. its like comparing man utd reserves against hull city all stars.. their 2nd team was still better than Hull… and I remember not long ago their reserves were also good enough to draw even with Everton in the FA Cup for at least 90mins…

    basically the best team’s 2nd team, should be good enough for the rest… like how federico macheda et al were good enough for fully fledged EPL team Hull and Everton…

  13. kirku permalink
    May 27, 2009 12:31 am

    well if you were to compare the world leagues then surely you would compare teams that are similar. comparing Valencia (perennial European contenders) with Fulham (perennial premiership strugglers) doesn’t really work. Valencia had a poor year and Fulham a very good year. The best way to compare leagues would be to imagine which teams would compete and the total them from each league. This would lead me to conclude that the EPL is far stronger than any of the other European leagues, not to mention the yearly domination in the CL. The Premiership top 4 would compete in any league in the world, can the same be said of the top four from other leagues? Nope.

  14. glamorousdiss permalink*
    May 27, 2009 12:55 am

    Good point there! I remember the big news yonks ago abt the breakaway European league which nvr materialised.. that would have been a great way to see which country had the best teams

    unfortunately we can only now speculate as the CL is the only thing that comes close.. oh well!

  15. kirku permalink
    May 27, 2009 2:20 am

    I would hate a European League, as would most football fans in Europe. No offense is meant by this but your only contact with the league is via television. This means that it doesn’t matter to you whether Spurs play Arsenal (rivalry aside), Werder Bremen or AFC Tibuktu because you will watch it on TV. For me however (as a pretend Spurs fan); I would love the Arsenal match as it’s just down the road but not be able to go to the Werder game because it’s in Germany.

    Now imagine that for all the fans that go regularly to football and would have to travel halfway round Europe every other week. Awful idea. :)

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