Friday, July 23, 2010

This is London calling

Rookie contracts are starting to pour in now as training camp lurches closer. Most notable of these is Dez Bryant, the Cowboys first round pick. Bryant has signed a five year deal that could reportedly reach up to $12 million in value. Colt McCoy, one of the Cleveland Browns third round picks has also signed a contract, worth something in the region of $5 million over four years. But now I want to get to the bread and butter of todays blog post. There is much talk being raised lately of the possibility of a Super Bowl being played in London and also the possibility of a franchise being established over here. Let me answer this with two words; No. No. I understand how important the Super Bowl is. More to the point, I understand how annoyed some people would be to see that game played over seas. Even more to the point, I understand how annoyed some people would be if their team made it all the way to the big game.... only to find out that they have to pay for trans-Atlantic flights and accommodation on top of the expense of the tickets for the game. For comparison purposes, there is a soccer tournament over here called the F.A. (Football Association) Cup. I wont go into all the details but suffice to say that it's a big deal over here. If this game was played outside of the UK, all hell would break loose. I mean that literally. When it was suggested recently that in the future an extra game might be played in the Premier league, with all the games being played abroad, the fans went nuts. The idea was quietly dropped. I can't think of a quicker, better way to alienate US fans from the league and to build resentment that the UK is getting preferential treatment in the name of generating extra dollars than to have the Super Bowl played in the UK. Would it be well attended? You bet it would. Would it really add anything to the game? Nope. Would it generate extra revenue? A little. Would it p*ss a lot of people off in the US? Hell yeah. And don't even get me started on the London Franchise. Forget all the talk about players and schedules and all that. Let's talk money. Will this franchise be successful. No. No. No. No. No. No. No. No. No. No. No. No. It will sink like a post-iceberg-impact model of the Titanic made out of lead. It will be a horrendous failure. Why? Simply because UK fans are not going to descend on London every week to watch a team that no-one cares about. The reason people are going to watch the current London games are two fold: 1) The novelty of watching their first "live" NFL game (which is why I went to see the Saints vs Chargers) 2) To watch their "team" (which is why I'm going to watch the red and gold awesomeness of the 49ers vs Broncos). Everyone over here who watches football has a team. Everyone. If you don't have a team you're probably not into football all that much and chances are you're not the kind of person that will fork out the total of nearly $180 for the ticket and travel (that's before we get onto the cost of beer, food and programs. Let's not go there....) Nobody, I repeat, NOBODY is going to give up their team for a London franchise. Ok, so maybe a few idiots will, but a London franchise will not work economically. The only people that will come to games will be the rich people who don't understand football and the people who are coming to support their team.... the away team that is. Every game will be a road game in terms of crowd support for a London Franchise. They simply can't win. And someone is going to be left severely out of pocket. If you have any comments on this subject, or any others for that matter, you can e-mail me at and don't forget to spread the word about the crazy English guy who has an irrational hatred of the Panthers. Have a great day everyone.

1 comment:

Kevin said... Sorry no.
It's already confusing with futbol and football. But maybe...just maybe if London gets a team, the Lions could schedule them a few times for some wins!