For many, money in football is a force of good which has revolutionised the game for the better, bringing with it a globalised sport which connects the people together but for others who ethics may stand firm against money they believe football has ‘sold its soul’. No one can deny the power and influence that money has in football, with Rupert Murdoch’s Sky TV, changing the face of the game from a ‘working class’ game to a billion pound business
On the surface of football everything looks to be incredibly successful; the Premier League is labelled ‘the greatest league in the world’ and billions are entertained by it, but beneath the surface, there is conflict and unrest. When the Premier League started back in 1992, no one could have truly predicted the impact the millions of Sky Sports would have on not only the English football but the global game as well. But has football ‘sold its soul’ for money?
Personally I think it has if this week’s announcement that West Ham’s clash away at Sunderland has been moved from the Saturday to the Monday is anything to go by. Yet again I feel the hardcore travelling West Ham fans have been ignored just for the benefit of TV. Hundreds of Hammers fans who would have otherwise made the long, gruelling trip to the North East may now miss out due to the decision to postpone the fixture by 48 hours.
This game is vital for the Hammers as we fight to avoid relegation from the Premier League and it could now well be a trip the team will now face without the full backing of the club’s tremendous away following. What the wonderful people at Sky don’t realise is that real football fans have to plan trips the length of the country well in advance.
Doing it this way, you get better deals on accommodation and travel. I know one group of eight who are travelling up on the Saturday morning early doors and have also booked a hotel in the centre of Newcastle before travelling home on the Sunday morning. There must have been hundreds of other fans who had similar plans and now they must ask themselves how much of the trip is nonrefundable and is it worth cancelling it to save the cost of say the hotel bill?
What would the true greats of the past in football think of the influence and power that money has in the game? The FA is losing grip of football in England and some rules and restrictions need to be put in place before the real spirit of football is lost forever and it becomes a business rather than a spectacle.