We need more, not less promotion and relegation

Close off the Premier League?

Honestly, I’d go the other way and open the thing up.

The rewards on offer are so great that millions upon millions are spent by desperate Premier League clubs who will do anything to stay where they are.  Some clubs (Wolves did it once, I think, Burnley and Blackpool have been shrewd) can make a profit from the silly TV money, the rest write the disappearing zeroes off as the cost of doing business and keep on keeping on like a drunk guinea pig stuck on a hamster wheel and starting to feel a bit sick.

Clubs in the bottom half of the league fight like anything to stay there, and the clubs in the Championship spend over the odds to try to get there.  (But, like our hamster wheel, it’s not that good really, particularly if you can’t enjoy yourself like you could before you got stuck on the wheel).

Sometimes we need saving from ourselves, and here’s the answer: not less but more promotion and relegation.  Let’s be adventurous here: if, every season, you promote and relegate six teams from the Premier League what do you do?  You lower barriers to entry.  You lower risk.  You spread wealth.  You make life more interesting, too.

Where’s the downside?

It’d never happen, but that doesn’t mean it shouldn’t.

6 thoughts on “We need more, not less promotion and relegation

  1. Sorry, I’m going to dismiss this whole thing as a good ol’ bit of xenophobia by Richard Bevan.

    Unnamed “foreign owners” invading the English league and wanting to change the basic rules and trample on hundreds of years of history?

    Yeah, right.

    1. You might be right. Teams like Liverpool and City aren’t in any danger of relegation anyway so no reason for them to ask for it. Blackburn/Venky’s might, but they thought they could sign Ronaldinho, too.

    2. The more I read his comments, the more I am inclined to agree. Seems he just wanted to make some headlines and perhaps turn the government review of how football is run away from his ‘esteemed’ organisation.

  2. Rich? What’s the downside of 6 sides getting relegated? Really? How many years have we finished 15th, 16th, and 17th?

  3. Well even more, i think the downside, one that you miss rich, is that the rich-poor gap will grow bigger.

    If you look at it in terms of classes of teams:

    ManU-ManCity-Chelsea (won’t get relegated as long as the money keeps rolling in)

    Arsenal-Liverpool-Tottenham (won’t finish 15th either, well not likely but theoretically possible)

    So let’s call those 6 safe under either scenario (if you want you could make this a top 5, tottenham is the most debatable i think)

    Then below that you have some large, historically important teams with finances ranging from shaky to decent, with pretty good on-field talent and/or managerial talent.

    I’d say you put Everton, Aston Villa, Newcastle, maybe 1-2 other teams here.

    In a 3-team relegation system, they have a chance of relegating, but just about everything has to go wrong, including multiple managers all failing, major players walking out, etc. It’s a slim chance, but there (this has probably happened once out of the last 50 potential tries, so a 2% incidence sounds right?)

    If everything goes right, they can legitimately shake up the apple cart, either get a champions league place and knock out one of the big boys, (see Newcastle in the early aughts, Everton circa 2005), or even Aston Villa’s failed charge of 3 years ago.

    More specifically, kind of similar to mid-level teams in baseball or basketball, they can go through a period of lean years, still draw decent attendance, and maybe ramp up for a 2-3 year blaze of glory, take their shot, if it misses, play the kids for 7 years with some savvy veterans and stay up on a budget and accumulate enough money to try again in the next decade.

    If you make relegation the bottom 6 teams, as opposed to bottom 3, then arsenal, liverpool and tottenham become sort of what the aston villa’s of the world are right now

    specifically “won’t go down but could”

    man city and chelsea will be fine as long as their owners keep emptying their wallets. manchester united will also be fine.

    but now, the aston villas, newcastles, and evertons will be in relegation scraps every 3 years, will probably go down, and while they wont quite be yo-yo clubs, they won’t be able to accumulate enough resources to have a go at it.

    teams like fulham will more or less become yo-yo clubs, and really cant have a go at it.

    The gap between the top and mid-table will be wider than ever.

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