Football is all about money. This is no news, I know.
However, once upon a time, that meant that teams had to win big trophies to make money, securing big sponsorship deals, signing big players, selling shirts and so on.
What the hell is going on now? Look at the Amsterdam Tournament. Red cards everywhere. Rooney and Scholes could be reported to the English FA by the Dutch FA and they face a ban in the Premiership, up to 3 matches. What the f*ck? For a red card in a pre-season tournament?
Inter players punching each other, very bad fouls (Cordoba), this is not the spirit of friendly games! Why is this happening?
Guess. Money. Clubs are now nothing less than companies, in many instances quoted on the stock market. What does that mean? That everything they do now is about money.
So players are told they need to be competitive during pre-season tournaments. Clubs need to play their star players. They're not ready? They're just back from holiday? They're not match fit? Who gives a damn, we want to make money, make them play.
Teams are doing pre-season tours all over the world. China, United States, you name it. James Ducker reports on today's Times:
Man Utd travelled 8,183 miles over the course of 12 days to play 270 minutes of football during their summer tour of the US two years ago, and even Sir Alex Ferguson had to admit that his players suffered the consequences during the season.
This season has not been much different. No sooner had United returned from a rigorous tour of South Africa did they fly to Holland for the LG Amsterdam Tournament at the weekend. But tiredness is not the only danger facing players as they look to satisfy the demands of countless sponsors and overseas audience. As Michael Carrick and Joe Cole will testify, the risk of injury is far greater in high-profile pre-season tournaments where they are expected to put on a show.
This is worrying. We're lucky that Inter are taking it easy at the moment, but I don't think we're have great prospects for the future. With people like Johansson and Blatter in charge of football.
I'm not so naive to think that football nowadays shouldn't be about money. Of course it is, but you'd expect the people in charge to look out for extreme situations, and protect the sport from them.
How can you just watch players being sent off and fighting for a stupid pre-season tournament? How can you accept national championships being compromised for the start with key players missing the start of the season through injury or suspension?
I'm sorry but I just cannot and will not accept that players can be suspended in their respective national championships because or red cards received during friendly games. It's a big joke, and an insult to fans.
Football needs reasonable people in charge, and God knows Blatter is not one of them. I remember after the women's football world cup, people were excited about progress made and good prospects for the future. When Blatter was asked about it, his way to dignify the sport and give a positive push for the developing of women's football was suggesting that they wore tighter tops. What a wanker. Not to mention how he managed to completely phuck up the offside rule, it's incredible that he got away with that.
We cannot expect UEFA or FIFA to be sensible then. We better be sensible ourselves. Let's not commit to big summer tours. What's the point asking players to make that much effort if you're going to pay for it when the serious games come around? What good will it come from it if we fail to win?
Let's win trophies, they bring big players, big players bring fans, fans bring money.
I hope Inter can maintain their sensible approach to this. Actually I hope somebody has words with the players about not taking such games too seriously, and therefore putting themselves at risk of injury or suspension.
God knows we're not a lucky team, let's try not to bring it on ourselves eh?