The All-Encompassing Pro/Rel Thread on Soccer in the USA

Discussion in 'Soccer in the USA' started by bigredfutbol, Mar 12, 2016.

  1. Potowmack

    Potowmack Member+

    Apr 2, 2010
    Washington, DC
    Club:
    DC United
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    Oh, absolutely. American soccer fans are full of crap when they talk about their love of pro/rel. Their real interest is watching a top EPL team play a top Bundesliga team. Huddersfield and Cardiff City are fun sideshows for them.
     
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  2. Paul Berry

    Paul Berry Member+

    Notts County and NYCFC
    England
    Apr 18, 2015
    Beacon NY
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    Remember that the initial complaint about Microsoft was made in 1993 but with appeals it was 2007 before it was closed.

    I'd say the landscape has changed a bit in that time.

    The Google case took seven years before they did the absolute minimum to comply.
     
  3. Paul Berry

    Paul Berry Member+

    Notts County and NYCFC
    England
    Apr 18, 2015
    Beacon NY
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    Oh they'll watch post-match shots of Cardiff and/or Huddersfield fans crying on NBC and talk about the passion that promotion and relegation brings, then go back to watching Chelsea and Arsenal for the next 51 weeks.

    Of course there's no passion in playoffs
     
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  4. Paul Berry

    Paul Berry Member+

    Notts County and NYCFC
    England
    Apr 18, 2015
    Beacon NY
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    #17679 Paul Berry, Nov 9, 2018 at 2:34 AM
    Last edited: Nov 9, 2018 at 2:40 AM
    Interesting in that UEFA and FIFA bar competitive leagues.

    And if we're going to apply EU competition laws to football then there's this:

    "Barring teams from other Member States from joining a given domestic league would seem to unfairly restrict competition."

    So does tradition overrule competition laws?

    And has an open pyramid even been around long enough to become a tradition?
     
  5. I think two things are being getting mixed.
    1st. Discussion about the ESL as it is being published and its yes or no violating of the EUart.101.
    2nd. Discussion about if the ESL alters it in certain ways you propose.

    When it comes to point 1, I still have to come across articles from specialized lawyers telling it stands a chance.

    When it comes to point 2 I clearly did tell that that only stands a chance if there are reasons to exempt for a greater cause. I said the greed of the 11 isnot going to stand the test, but that's my opinion. I asked what greater cause could be served by the proposed closed setting to earn its exemption. Still waiting for it.

    And of course if there is no closed shop, there's no violation of EU law.
     
  6. That wasnot the example given.
    Let's try it again.
    The ESL is being touted as the league that's going to obliterate all the other leagues financially because the fans all are going to tune in because of matches like ManCity-ManUnited, Real-Barca, Bayern-Dortmund or Juve- AC to name the real biggies.
    It is claimed the media revenues of the league will eclipse the money the UCL now generates.
    Those three matches I mention are ones that are now already available and it isnot costing much to watch them in Europe.
    Fact is that when in the national leagues matches are being played, like Feyenoord-Ajax, or Anderlecht-Brugge or Ol. Marseille-Monaco, almost all fans watching matches live on screen in those countries tune in for these matches, not for those top of the bill superclub matches.
    These are facts.
    So the question is why would that change the minute these top of the bill matches are being played under the ESL umbrella instead of EPL/BuLi/LaLiga/SerieA?
    What would be the lure that suddenly the same product in another wrapper becomes wanted?
     
  7. Where did I say people arenot watching UCL/UEL?
    Fact is that the tv revenues for the CL/EL in Europe are falling, even from the countries that have the big guns in it. This is an indication people watch it less and less. Even while these matches have no competing matches in the leagues, as UEFA has made the FA's not to play matches on those days.

    If you ask this question you missed the reports published by the Swiss Ramble and Deloitte that carved the revenues of the top 100 clubs by source. Look them up and you got your answers.

    The way you put it is like there's no income from CL/EL at all, which is a gross distortion of my comment.
     
  8. The ones with the power to declare it a tradition (politicians on national and European level) have mentioned it as such. It is somewhere in one of the articles I posted.
     
  9. The European Commission and judges of courts up to the EUCoJ have said the Law isnot absolute. It can be overruled for the greater cause of the common good.
    It's not tradition perse that could make the law bow. The ESL investors have made such outragious claims about the amount of money they were going to divert from the current soccer scene into the pockets of the ESL (probably propaganda to lure the clubs) by way of the closed shop that in that the very existence of the whole soccer heritage up till the national teams were at stake.

    Mind you, this all is from everybody pure speculation as nothing of the sort has materialized. We only know that the heritage question has been activated in several countries to prevent clubs and national teams from going completely behind payed walls.

    The CL for instance isnot considered heritage, so it can be put completely behind a pay wall. In many countries it is done so.

    It is important to know how the process works.
    If a practice is against the EUart101 there are several ways it can be addressed.
    First the EU Commission itself can start an investigation if it thinks it's necesary.
    It then can decide if prosecution is necesary or not.
    Second a complaint can be made, in which case the EU Commission looks in it to decide if it needs to be investigated or not.
    Third there's the way through the line of courts, by suing a party in an appropriate court. See the Basketball article I posted.

    Up till now nobody bothered about that FIFA/UEFA rule as it was there, but nobody was interested in cross border activity. The first time it came up was with the BeNed league/Atlantic league idea. However nobody really made strides towards something real to put on the table. So it still was academic.

    On the topic now there are changes in positions.
    First UEFA has changed its stance on cross border leagues, more or less inviting Belgium and the Netherlands to make moves. The FIFA however has still the No stance.
    The other development is the publication of the ESL plan.
    So the ESL has to file a complaint vs FIFA/UEFA about that non crossing borders league rule.
    If however they're going to operate outside FIFA/UEFA there's no need to.

    But other than the Der Spiegel publication nothing is happening on that front at all. All the rumour/noise now created by interested parties is to deter the clubs from making the next move= signing that agreement. All the noise is ment to make the financially less strong/weakest clubs rethink their positions as the legal battle starts the minute they sign the contract and will have severe consequences for their viability in the years the battle takes place.
     
  10. It should be noted that the EU itself gave in treaty rounds what matters:

    Nice Declaration (2001)

    “(EU) must in its action under the various Treaty provisions, take
    account of the social, educational and cultural functions inherent in
    sport and making it special”

    Lisbon Treaty: Article 165 TFEU

    Sport as supporting EU competence

    Direct EU action must take into account
    “the specific nature of sport, its structures ... and its social and
    educational function”
     
  11. This gives a discussion about media and sport and the law:
    https://www.city.ac.uk/__data/asset...0/Hoehn_Kastrinaki_Sports_Rights_Feb_2012.pdf

    "The most important international club competition in European football, the UEFA Champions League, remains a hybrid being shown on both free-to-air and pay TV channels due to a regulatory deal struck by UEFA with the European Commission which in light recent interventions by competition authorities affecting the sale of TV rights may need revisiting."

    "The UEFA Champions League is a hybrid when it comes to the sale of broadcasting rights. As per the agreement between UEFA and the European Commission from 2003, UEFA sells the right for one live game of choice to be broadcast free -to - air each week (in Netherlands and Belgium two
    games per week) with the remainder being sold typically to a pay TV broadcaster
    ."

    I didnot know that the broadcast of the CL matches were part of a deal between EU and UEFA.
     
  12. barroldinho

    barroldinho Member+

    Man Utd and LA Galaxy
    England
    Aug 13, 2007
    Ex-pat in HB, CA
    Club:
    Manchester United FC
    Nat'l Team:
    England
    Well yes, I told you several posts ago that you were conflating different points of discussion.

    I'm still not seeing where you get this "exemption for a higher cause" thing from.

    The Der Spiegel article didn't say that at all. This is what it said:

    "The plans are explicitly based on Euroleague Basketball, which is not completely impermeable so as not to violate European competition law."


    In other words, the league regulations explicitly state that the "A License" is revocable by the league and attainable by any club that fits the criteria.

    Specifically, the league can revoke the license...

    6.1.1. In the event that the Licensed Club finishes in the last position of the
    EuroLeague standings in three different seasons during the term of
    its Licensed Club Contract.

    6.1.4. If, in the season that has just finished, the Club has ranked among the
    clubs placed in the bottom half of the Domestic Championship final
    standings. For the purposes of this article, if the Domestic Championship has an odd number of teams, the bottom half includes half plus 0.5.

    So the league didn't get a "higher cause exemption". It doesn't need one because it's not actually a closed league and doesn't actually violate the law.

    Furthermore, the Columbia judicial review you posted wasn't specifically about this latest ESL proposal, it was about the concept of a totally closed league in general.

    This one that you posted explicitly about this proposal...

    https://inews.co.uk/sport/football/...nal-chelsea-liverpool-manchester-united-city/

    ...expressly says "could", "may" and "might", not "would" or "will".

    Furthermore, it says it specifically about the 20 year protection of 11 clubs, not the concept of the league itself.

    About the Euroleague, it says:

    "Although the creation of Euroleague Basketball in 2000 – a 16-team cross-national league in which 11 teams have long-term licenses and are guaranteed to participate every season – has been viewed as a parallel, Bailey said it did not ensure a similar football superleague would be permitted. “Each case and sport will be considered on its merits and the finances and heritage of European football are very different.”"

    So it doesn't ensure a similar football league would be permitted. That's very different from saying it would fail (or even that it would probably fail) as an argument, precedent or defence.
     
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  13. Paul Berry

    Paul Berry Member+

    Notts County and NYCFC
    England
    Apr 18, 2015
    Beacon NY
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    Where is it touted that it's going to "obliterate" other leagues?

    Anyone that thinks people are going to stop watching domestic games to watch Europap is an idiot.

    Only for those individual clubs.

    No-one is disputing that.

    It wouldn't.

    The benefit is that whereas Manchester United get <1% of UCL revenue they could get 5% or 6% of ESL revenue, which could be greater because most people only watch the big teams.

    I don't think anyone related to ESL is naive enough to think that people will switch from watching their favorite domestic teams.

    If this is why you are so emotional about it, I'd say calm down and keep watching Feyenoord.
     
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  14. barroldinho

    barroldinho Member+

    Man Utd and LA Galaxy
    England
    Aug 13, 2007
    Ex-pat in HB, CA
    Club:
    Manchester United FC
    Nat'l Team:
    England
    So what conclusions did they come to on soccer?

    What aspects of domestic football must be maintained to secure the integrity of cultural heritage?
     
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  15. Paul Berry

    Paul Berry Member+

    Notts County and NYCFC
    England
    Apr 18, 2015
    Beacon NY
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    Maybe this case should be referred to the ECHR, as the ability of your local park team to one day play in the FIFA Club World Cup should be a human right like freedom from slavery and freedom of religion.
    :rolleyes:
     
  16. Paul Berry

    Paul Berry Member+

    Notts County and NYCFC
    England
    Apr 18, 2015
    Beacon NY
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    So back to pro/rel in the USA.

    I was looking back at some old football tables and for around 25 years England accommodated 44 clubs in the Third Division split in to 2 regions.

    Transposing England on to map of the US, England has the same area as a medium sized US State like New York.

    So in an area the size of New York State, there were 44 clubs in the same division (the league was divided hierarchically the same season the first national motorway was opened).

    In 2019 there will be around 26 independent teams nationally in the USL Championship (D2).

    How many teams could the Championship contain?

    Of course the US is sparsely populated compared to Europe. I would say New York State could support up to 8 second division clubs, on Long Island, White Plains/Westchester, Hudson Valley (Poughkeepsie/Wappingers Falls), Albany Metro, Rochester and Buffalo and maybe Syracuse.

    A California+ conference include any of Fresno, San Diego, Sacramento, San Diego, Orange County, Long Beach/Greater LA, Reno, Oakland, San Francisco/San Jose metro, San Mateo, Bakersfield, San Bernadeno/Riverside and Modesto.

    Anyway my point is that before you even consider pro/rel you would have to max out a division. Teams can self-promote or self-relegate until that point.

    Gut feeling tells me that USL D2 could easily handle 80 teams nationally, split into 8 regional conferences with the top 2 teams qualifying for the playoffs.

    Compare that to NCAA D1 that has upwards of 300 teams in the top 3 sports.

    But before you can introduce an open pyramid USL would have to stop growing and that's a long way of.

    Today teams can join USL at whatever level they can afford (and even if automatic promotion existed most clubs would probably decline).

    I think @barroldinho and several others have suggested this many times.

    To get to the point promotion on playing merit is introduced, I would suggest this.

    MLS - 28, 32 or 36 teams;
    USL Championship - +/- 80 teams
    USL League One - minimum 80 teams
    USL League Two - unlimited
     
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  17. The pyramid and the merit in soccer. It was in one of the posted articles quoting EU parlement/Commission members.
     
  18. barroldinho

    barroldinho Member+

    Man Utd and LA Galaxy
    England
    Aug 13, 2007
    Ex-pat in HB, CA
    Club:
    Manchester United FC
    Nat'l Team:
    England
    So pro/rel and meritocracy?

    That doesn't prohibit a Super League unless it's closed or unreasonably restrictive.

    This ESL proposal allows for entry for up to 5 clubs per season initally.

    The only potential issue - as we keep telling you - is the 11 protected teams and even in those cases, it's a temporary protection.

    In fact, the fact that they frame it as "protected from relegation", pretty much confirms that it won't be a closed league.
     
  19. No, it's about the disappearing of money out of the football environment. Even if only 1/4 of what the ESL claims to come their way is reality, it means this money disappears, isnot roulating in the soccer world and thus finances for soccer infrastructure, development etc. diminish.
    In other words, quality in soccer is going to suffer.
     
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  20. It is pretty much fake, as there isnot a league to promote from and where to relegate to? Invitation isnot in line with the standards for competition and transparency.

    Temporary or not, for only the 11 or not, it's a violation and when challenged has to prove to fulfill the test of serving a higher cause for the common good. This phrasing was used in one of the texts I posted by the court in the sense that the Law isnot absolute, but can be exempt etc.
    And again, but we're running in circles as you keep on telling you both have told me again and again the 11 etc.
    Simply, give an answer to the question in what way the Courts stance the EU101 Law can be overruled by a higher cause, is present in what you mention. Stop repeating the same stuff and give a clear answer to what the 11 can put on the table of the Court that fullfills the requirement set by the EU and the Courts. Stop repeating the same stuff and give a simple answer.
    What is it that serves a higher cause that will convince the Court to decide the ESL doesnot have to comply to art. 101.
     
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  21. barroldinho

    barroldinho Member+

    Man Utd and LA Galaxy
    England
    Aug 13, 2007
    Ex-pat in HB, CA
    Club:
    Manchester United FC
    Nat'l Team:
    England
    I see nothing in there that relates specifically to this discussion.

    Can you explain your thinking here?

    It's not like they'll stop buying players. They can't scout and develop every youth prospect on the planet.

    The different continental confederations prove that healthy teams and leagues can easily exist without regular play against the world's biggest teams.

    It's also a bit late to start worrying about an elite few teams stockpiling revenues.
     
  22. barroldinho

    barroldinho Member+

    Man Utd and LA Galaxy
    England
    Aug 13, 2007
    Ex-pat in HB, CA
    Club:
    Manchester United FC
    Nat'l Team:
    England
    I keep saying the same thing because you keep ignoring my points and referring back to articles that don't say what you think they do.

    You also keep ascribing positions to me that I haven't taken (aka, a strawman).

    Furthermore, you keep ignoring (or misunderstanding) that we're discussing a multifaceted proposal that outlines various approaches and formats.

    One approach was to have the ESL as a tier above the domestic leagues, which would see the big clubs leave. In that case, I haven't said that the 20 year protection for the 11 couldn't be problematic, so there's no burden on me to prove otherwise.

    Another option put forth (the one which seems most likely, given the referrence to the EuroLeague) is that the clubs participate in both the domestic league AND the ESL. In that case, the 11 team protection seems far less critical and there is a legally similar competition in the form of the EuroLeague. The EuroLeague is not considered to be a violation and contrary to what you keep claiming, doesn't appear to have a "higher cause" exemption.

    However, the article you keep citing about EU101 was talking about closed leagues, not this proposal.
     
  23. Paul Berry

    Paul Berry Member+

    Notts County and NYCFC
    England
    Apr 18, 2015
    Beacon NY
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    Big money in football is a fairly new phenomenom. It did very well without it before Roman Abramovic and his imitators came along.

    I don't see how the academy at a club like Ajax would suffer because McDonalds decides to pump money into a European League.

    Most sponsorship money gets sucked up in salaries anyway, so the people who "suffer" most will be players.

    I really don't see much difference from today. 11 teams dominate European soccer. 11 teams attract the biggest investment, sponsorship and TV money, 11 teams have the biggest academies and the best infrastructure.

    Get rid of those teams and there's more of the rest to go around.

    In what specific way would Feyenoord suffer?

    I think Notts County's priorities are a good manager and better players. The 6,000 people that turn up at Meadow Lane aren't the sort of people who veg out watching the UEFA Celebrity League.
     

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