Epl Coming To America For Regular Season?

BossNYC

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I don't really see how. The league's structure is so different from the NFL, I don't see how this would work...
 

MaineRoad

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Very unlikely to ever happen and if it did I think it would be the final straw for many fans in England.
 

Falastur

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This was discussed about 6 years ago - the idea was known as "Game 39" or "the 39th Step". It proved monumentally unpopular with fans and was forced to be dropped because of the sheer scale of the negative backlash. The problem is that, unlike US sports, where the idea of playing an uneven number of games against different teams home/away due to your conference system is fairly common, in the UK all leagues are organised under the strict understanding that every team must play the same number of games home and away against each team. Playing a game in a foreign country would basically be adding an extra match against one opponent to everyone's schedule, and the only reason they are really proposing to do it is to earn even more money for themselves.

What if, say, Chelsea and Liverpool were tied on points after 38 games at the end of the season and they both came to the US to play a 39th game, but Chelsea got Burnley and Liverpool got Man United? There would be legal challenges and complaints to UEFA and the CAF flying in left, right and centre, it would potentially destroy the league.

On top of this there's the problem that, in a period where football is coming under fire for alienating its home fans by driving prices through the roof, now you're talking about taking games away to places where 99% of the fans can't afford to travel to. It's really driving a wedge between the sport and the fans.

I appreciate you guys all live over the other side of the Atlantic and you're probably really hoping to see some top teams playing meaningful games in a place where you can actually get to watch it live, but I have to be completely and brutally honest about my feelings on this: if this were to ever happen, it would shatter my love for the sport to the point where I'm not sure it could bring myself to remain interested in the league.
 
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MikeDatTiger

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This was discussed about 6 years ago - the idea was known as "Game 39" or "the 39th Step". It proved monumentally unpopular with fans and was forced to be dropped because of the sheer scale of the negative backlash. The problem is that, unlike US sports, where the idea of playing an uneven number of games against different teams home/away due to your conference system is fairly common, in the UK all leagues are organised under the strict understanding that every team must play the same number of games home and away against each team. Playing a game in a foreign country would basically be adding an extra match against one opponent to everyone's schedule, and the only reason they are really proposing to do it is to earn even more money for themselves.

What if, say, Chelsea and Liverpool were tied on points after 38 games at the end of the season and they both came to the US to play a 39th game, but Chelsea got Burnley and Liverpool got Man United? There would be legal challenges and complaints to UEFA and the CAF flying in left, right and centre, it would potentially destroy the league.

On top of this there's the problem that, in a period where football is coming under fire for alienating its home fans by driving prices through the roof, now you're talking about taking games away to places where 99% of the fans can't afford to travel to. It's really driving a wedge between the sport and the fans.

I appreciate you guys all live over the other side of the Atlantic and you're probably really hoping to see some top teams playing meaningful games in a place where you can actually get to watch it live, but I have to be completely and brutally honest about my feelings on this: if this were to ever happen, it would shatter my love for the sport to the point where I'm not sure it could bring myself to remain interested in the league.

Exactly. It doesn't work.

Now, I could see putting an FA Cup semifinal there instead of at Wembley. It's already at a neutral site and you don't have the concerns about competitive imbalance although some clubs would have more support. It may give some clubs a reason to actually try in the FA Cup in order to get the showcase game. You could also put the Champions League final in the United States for the same reasons.

That said, I still would rather English soccer stay in, well, England. I'd rather grow MLS than steal EPL games. Let the English go English football in English football stadiums and we'll catch them when we go overseas.
 

MrE

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Exactly. It doesn't work.

Now, I could see putting an FA Cup semifinal there instead of at Wembley. It's already at a neutral site and you don't have the concerns about competitive imbalance although some clubs would have more support. It may give some clubs a reason to actually try in the FA Cup in order to get the showcase game. You could also put the Champions League final in the United States for the same reasons.

That said, I still would rather English soccer stay in, well, England. I'd rather grow MLS than steal EPL games. Let the English go English football in English football stadiums and we'll catch them when we go overseas.


I cant see the FA cup semi happening.
Often there will be a team involved that has not been to Wembley for years. Fans that have followed the team home and away for years won't be able to afford, or make it due to work commitments etc. Putting a Wembley date away from Wembley could be worse than Falusturs scenario.
 

einwindir

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I cant see the FA cup semi happening.
Often there will be a team involved that has not been to Wembley for years. Fans that have followed the team home and away for years won't be able to afford, or make it due to work commitments etc. Putting a Wembley date away from Wembley could be worse than Falusturs scenario.
Pardon my ignorance. What is the significance of Wembley? Is it only used for major sporting and music events?
 

MikeDatTiger

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Ok, so I have an idea. Change the league cup to include both English and MLS teams. You wouldn't get EPL v EPL in America, but you'd get EPL teams playing games that matter. Logistics might be tough but would be much better than taking away home dates from EPL teams.
 

Falastur

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Pardon my ignorance. What is the significance of Wembley? Is it only used for major sporting and music events?

Wembley is the national team's home stadium, and the biggest stadium in the country. It's one of - if not the - most famous stadiums in world sport, owing to its 150 year old reputation as being the place where all national cup finals are played (even the ones for teams in the seventh tier of the league system, who only have a few hundred fans), and owing to the fact that the FA Cup final has been broadcast internationally for almost as long as the World Cup has - back in the days of the USSR it was the only western programme to be allowed on Communist Romanian TV for example.

Even though Wembley was knocked down and rebuilt 10 years ago and most people agree the new stadium is not as good, the history and prestige of the old ground have carried over. Reaching Wembley in a cup final/FA Cup semifinal is seen as almost as important an achievement in a club's history as actually winning the cup they are there to play for. Considering how many English teams have never won any trophy in their 100+ existences, or are on decades-long barren spells, it becomes a matter of great relevance therefore to a club's fans to say that their team has "finally made it to Wembley". Even just getting there for an FA Cup semifinal is considered a matter of great pride, simply because it means you get to play at Wembley.
 

Midas Mulligan

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I actually don't think it will happen either. But I had to have a headline to try to get you guys to chat about the other stuff.
 
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MrE

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I actually don't think it will happen either. But I had to have a headline to try to get you guys to chat about the other stuff.

I have heard that the Charity Shield / Community Shield might take a roadtrip overseas....
The FA Cup winners V Premier League Champions Game.

I can see them getting away with letting this one slip out of Wembley as nowadays most fans view it as a meaningless friendly. It is played the week before the season starts, and no one wants to risk injury for it. Often second string sides are played to protect the big players for the actual season
 

Falastur

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I have heard that the Charity Shield / Community Shield might take a roadtrip overseas....
The FA Cup winners V Premier League Champions Game.

I can see them getting away with letting this one slip out of Wembley as nowadays most fans view it as a meaningless friendly. It is played the week before the season starts, and no one wants to risk injury for it. Often second string sides are played to protect the big players for the actual season

You seem to have forgotten why so many games are being played at Wembley in the first place...
 

MrE

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You seem to have forgotten why so many games are being played at Wembley in the first place...

Money ...... But if the FA can get more money moving it out ?

Also didn't say I agreed with it, but I can see some logic.
 

NYCFCFan10

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I know part of the push to bring the NFL to London is coming from the English side to get a NFL team to play at Wembley.

Did the stadium run way over budget or something?