OPINION: Premier League - best in the world or vastly overhyped?
The myth that the Premier League is the best league in the world is fuelled by money and the media.
However, once again the myth is being tested, with many starting to ask whether the Premier League really is the best league in the world.
Many English sports channels have been trying to convince viewer’s that they’re getting to watch the most compelling and eagerly anticipated match in the world on a weekly basis.
We are all too familiar with Sky’s Super Sunday, when in reality the likes of Sunderland v Watford should never be labelled “super” when the likes of Bayern Munich and Barcelona could all be playing at the same time.
Money really does make the world go around in football. The new TV deal means that the Premier League teams have more spending power than ever before, including those coming up from the Championship who could potentially be able to indulge on a single player worth in excess of £20 million.
In comparison, around the world that option is only afforded to certain clubs who are continually challenging at the top of the table for Champions League football.
It may be suggested that media companies and sponsors know that England is where the money is at and in order to keep their customers, they are effectively handing money to clubs so that they can bring in players from all areas of the globe.
The so called “big stars” within the Premier League are all players that the Champions League clubs have not deemed ‘good enough’ anymore.
Players such as Paul Pogba, Sergio Aguero and Alexis Sanchez were all at what we consider to be the best teams in world football but were all sold because those clubs found better players. So why have they ended up in the Premier League? Not because it is the best league in the world, but it is the richest major league in the world.
On the other hand, there has been plenty of movement out of the Premier League over the last ten years or so, with the likes of Gareth Bale, Thierry Henry, Cristiano Ronaldo, Xabi Alonso, and Luis Suarez all moving overseas. All of those mentioned were exceeding all expectation at their respected clubs, often carrying them on their worst days, yet a foreign club came along and signed them with relative ease. Forget the fact that it was Barcelona and Real Madrid, if you’re playing in the best league in the world why is it so easy for other clubs to pick whoever they want?
It’s not often that you see English clubs, like Chelsea and Manchester City who are even backed by rich owners, going to Real Madrid and having their pick of the players they desire.
For instance, Isco had the opportunity to sign for City, however moved straight to Real Madrid despite knowing that he wouldn’t play regular first team football.
Yes, it could still be argued that he wouldn’t have played regular football for City, but regardless he missed out the middle man.
Clubs are putting good players on a pedestal and the English media are labelling them “world class”.
If you were to look at City’s squad, how many would you consider to be world class? Granted it’s open to interpretation, but I would probably only say Sergio Aguero and David Silva.
You could also argue that both Vincent Kompany and Kevin De Bruyne are in that category.
But for all the money they have spent over the years, shouldn’t they have a whole team of eleven world class players? Shouldn’t they be able to retain their Premier League title year after year? Yet, because they’re not retaining the title, more money is being spent on “world class” players from abroad, leaving their English players abandoned.
Molly Jennens is currently a student on the football journalism course at the University of Derby.