Tag Archives: Andrea Agnelli

Who makes the congregation?

Yes, there you were outside and you suddenly see a church, so you wonder who decides on that congregation, the Bible (the third edition reprint with 5 chapters omitted), the bible of King James, the members of the Holiness Baptist Association or the disgruntled members who created the Baptist Purity Association? Yes, it is out there, all versions all creeds and they all have their version of the truth, also optionally the true version that whoever is up there finds the most appealing. But the new religion is sport and we saw that unfold really fast, did we not? With pope Aleksander Ceferin and pope Gianni Infantino at the head of their churches, and they will not tolerate anyone falling out of line. The addition here is that politicians (David freakin Cameron) as well as the media as a whole are really happy to lend a hand to these two popes.

Yet, the media also gives another side. In this, the Guardian (at https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2021/apr/22/esl-european-super-league-global-capitalism-football-tech-giants) gives a really good version, a good story. The writer is giving us the lowdown and Larry Elliott does a really good job of this. He gives us a lot of the goods, not all but a lot. 

And it was then, that this article that gave me an idea. You see, there is a lot of good in the article and all of it true, but there is a part missing. You see, I have no doubt that they were all in it for the money. In this I have no sympathy for a person like Ivan Gazidis, Andrea Agnelli or Florentino Pérez. I do not hate them, I merely do not care about football, I (for the most) do not see the need to care about people who make more per week then I will ever make a year. OK, there optionally 4 exceptions, but this is not about my 5G IP. But money is the foundation used and we need to see this.

So when we see in the article “Free-market purists say they hate the idea because it is the wrong form of capitalism”, it is correct but incomplete. Then there is “The ESL has demonstrated that global capitalism operates on the basis of rigged markets not free markets, and those running the show are only interested in entrenching existing inequalities” which is almost dead on the nose. You see the media has a role to play, as I have stated many times before, the first three parties the media pleases are the Shareholders, the Stakeholders and the advertisers, the audience is a distant fourth. In all this, if there was really an impartial media we would have seen all kinds of interviews with the owners of those 15 teams, but did we? You tell me, where and when were they interviewed? Then there is the stage we see presented as “Having 15 of the 20 places guaranteed for the founder members represents a colossal barrier to entry and clearly stifles competition. There is not much chance of “creative destruction” if an elite group of clubs can entrench their position by trousering the bulk of the TV receipts that their matches will generate”, there is actually a second truth hidden there and it is ‘trousering the bulk of the TV receipts that their matches will generate’ and this is where the media gets involved, you see there are no arrangements with the media when it comes to the ESL, as such the 15 biggest teams will not fall under some agreement with the media, FIFA or UEFA, that money is theirs, the media will have to make new arrangements, and do you think that advertisers will pay the amount we see for the other teams? That is why the media is the larger problem and those two popes, they would lose out on a lot, so whilst we see “he called on the football world to keep fighting against the “disgraceful” plan for a breakaway European competition, worth an estimated $20 billion to the clubs” (source: Fox Sports) we also see that UEFA and FIFA and the media would lose out on an optional $20 billion, this is the larger issue. And the media has remained silent on it, even at the end, the news was all about the fans, the fans were never part of this. We saw “Forget coronavirus travel lists, when it comes to football the UK was being put on code red”, the money involved is too big. 

In the end I do not know whether the ESL was bad or good, the issue is that 15-20 teams of the upper setting would be playing football, the fans do not miss out, they get their football, these teams are merely in a stage of the same level, the same highest level and they are all playing against one another. So the actual losers would have been Aleksander Ceferin, Gianni Infantino and the media, it got to the point where David Cameron got involved, they were THAT scared and made it a political game from the start. If it was real, if there was really care of football, the UK would also be playing the games from the Russian Premier League. Yet the stage is that those fans can find them on YouTube. Where is the Greek league? Yes it is quite the setup, locality for added local advertising. But on a lot of there there is silence. 

Yes, Larry makes a good case with “the men who made their money out of nuts and bolts and waste paper firms in north London have been replaced by oligarchs and hedge funds. TV, barely mentioned in the Glory Game, has arrived with its billions of pounds in revenue”, it is not merely that these teams were changing the levels of loyalty, they took food from the through of pigs and those pigs can squeal, all whilst the media (who would lose a lot too) were the helping hand these two popes needed. 

What I saw was a massive one sided tsunami of flaming and colouring against anything that was not them three. And the people for the most bought it. So when we see “Asked about the Chelsea fans that gathered outside Stamford Bridge, he shot back: “There were 40 of them and if you like I’ll tell you who brought them there.”” We see in part a larger truth, the throughs are in a stage of added protection and the pigs are swarming to blame whatever they can for the image and view to be pushed to other places, but when we see “Ex-FIFA president Sepp Blatter and former secretary general Jerome Valcke had their bans extended by six years this Wednesday after the pair were found guilty of financial wrongdoing” whilst actions that took millions from the coffers of FIFA hd been going on for well over a decade and nothing was done, whilst the BBC (Andrew Jennings) pulled the alarm, all whilst we now see “when it comes to football the UK was being put on code red”, we see the stage of corruption and intentional avoidance, whilst for 15 years these same organisations did next to NOTHING. 

A stage that is not seen and actively avoided. As such we need to see that there is a larger stage and greed is only allowed by some, weird is it not? More important, this is not over, I reckon that all kinds of agreements are signed up, agreements with the media, the advertisers and the teams, as I personally see it, the throughs will be protected, greed is all.

Enjoy the week!

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Consequences of balls

We all face them, you, me, pretty much everyone, we always face consequences. We do not always face them the same way and some see a diminished version of it, but they will be there, no exception. So when I saw the FIFA corruption scandal explode 2-3 years ago, I wondered what would happen next, and yes reports were suppressed and we got to see all kinds of excuses. But it was an event with far reaching consequences. Now, I personally believe that some of the upper class leagues decided to fight the expansionism by certain members and they created the European Super League, the BBC gives us all kinds of news including “Uefa said it will use “all measures” possible to stop the “cynical project”.” To them I say ‘If you had done something to stop the fucking corruption by FIFA, you might not be in this mess’, and that is not all, when we consider ‘Sepp Blatter gets new six-year ban from football after Fifa investigation’ (source: the Guardian, 24th march), so not only was the first conviction not enough, we see him getting more and there is no way that the high end of UEFA was unaware, the BBC investigation over 10 years shows that there is a lot more going on and they stayed silent, so in the setting of anti-expansionism, the largest team set up a new league and it will draw crowds. Is it fair on the ECA (European Clubs’ Association), or UEFA? Not sure if that is in call, it is the consequence of letting Sepp Blatter and his friends getting away with the amount they have. So when we see “Senior figures at European football’s governing body are furious about the proposals”, are they? Where was their indignation stopping FIFA? Where was their indignation on the suppressed reports? Sitting on your hands also comes with consequences and these teams are looking at a way to make it pay for them, so when we see “This proposal risks shutting the door on fans for good, reducing them to mere spectators and consumers” I cannot stop laughing, this is exactly what fns are, they are spectators, they are consumers, this is how sports work and any display or marketing event to show that they are more is pretty much a lie. Consider that “The gross salary awarded by FIFA to its President Gianni Infantino rose to more than $3.2 million (£2.4 million/€2.66 million) in 2019. The world football body’s 2019 annual report details amounts earmarked for both Infantino and Fatma Samoura, secretary general, in salary and allowances last year, at what stage is that level of income seen as normal? I get that they optionally earn a decent penny, but that decent? A source gave us in 2018 ‘UEFA reveals president Ceferin is paid $1.64M salary’, yes these people will see a drop in income, so they are furious, in all this what is the stage we need to see? Can we blame that Andrea Agnelli (Juventus), Ed Woodward (Manchester United) and Ivan Gazidis (AC Milan) want to see a chunk of that money go towards their own club? Oh and before I have stop typing (from excessive laughter) consider “Labour leader Keir Starmer said the clubs involved should “rethink immediately” or “face the consequences of their actions”” I wonder where the hell he was when FIFA got away with event after event, at this point he is better off keeping quiet. So when I see all these people cry havoc, on how fair it is and how greed driven it is, consider their silence when Andrew Jennings initially voiced his show on FIFA in 2006 and for how long serious investigations were avoided and pushed into the dark room in the back. Now we see the consequences on the biggest teams, having to chance injury on Edinson Cavani against a third tier team a week before to head of against AC Milan, this is not against that third tier team, but we all know that the biggest teams want to play the other biggest teams, not fall to injury against a low level team and the fans, the chances to see the big teams fight each other, I am certain they will love it pretty much right of the bat. It is the consequence of badly thought through expansionism, the biggest players are wondering why they need to suffer the consequences of bad management. I believe (still speculatively speaking) it is that simple.

I for one, do not really care, I am a hockey fan, there are 31 NHL teams in total over all of the US and Canada combined, UEFA (Union of European Football Associations), has 4 groups adding up to 79 teams. There is a cost to expansionism and I reckon that they are seeing it now. If Ron Francis (Seattle Kraken) offers me a place as goalie on his team, I will happily accept, I get it, we all want to be in the big leagues, but a stage where we have 4 groups combined to 79 teams, the setting is off the wall and the people in charge should have stopped a long time ago, but the media coins were just too appealing and in this we see that FIFA and UEFA are in a bad place, they got themselves there and now we see politicians (if we can call Keir Starmer one), they are all about the change and how these manager have to ‘rethink immediately’, all whilst there are larger flaws to consider and these teams are now setting the stage for THEIR team. Let’s not forget that UEFA is not beyond the paint reach. So when we see “Michel Platini, who was the head of UEFA at the time that Blatter headed up FIFA and the corruption allegations were taking place, had to deny receiving a ‘disloyal payment’ last year. He was paid £1.35 million for, he describes, ‘legitimate consultancy work’. The problem he had, however, was that he received the payment in 2011 – a full nine years after his initial payment for work with FIFA and just three months before Blatter was re-elected at FIFA boss in 2011” (source: Football Stadiums), in all this who even remembers Andrew Jennings? Who is asking the deeper questions? I personally see that expansionism led to Qatar 2022, now, personally I like the idea of Football reaching the Middle East, if sport gets a conversation going, their participation should be welcomed, but in the light of expansionism, there is a drawback and those sponsors are crying like little girls, and now as that is taking place certain funds are suddenly questioned on a larger scale, there is a consequence on nearly every turn and whilst people like Keir Starmer cry foul, the tend to get awfully quiet around the Sepp Blatter case, what cries did he give us when Sky Sports gave us “FIFA’s ethics committee found Blatter was part of a “vicious circle” of officials who sought to award themselves over £50m in undeclared payments”, which is funny, because that much money took years to gather and for the longest time there was nothing and the media was quiet on nearly all of it (which makes sense), but it took a BBC investigative journalist (Andrew Jennings) to create the visibility, even then it took over a decade for all of it to make the limelight and the headlines, why do you think that was? Perhaps a decent look on stakeholders and their influence in media is not too weird a call to make? What do you think?

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