You can’t escape it; everywhere you look it inundates you on TV, radio, social media and this very blog (doh!). Everyone has transfer mania! This weekend all the major European leagues will be in action with Spain and Italy starting their league fixtures yet all anyone can and wants to talk about is transfers. After a somewhat dull summer of international football, international club friendlies and MLS we should all be buzzing to see top players at top clubs playing in top leagues. Yet, the only focus in the media and even commentary during matches is who is going to be transferred and to where. It is a product of an artificial transfer window that Corey and I tried to “fix” in the last podcast without much success.
Since the podcast, I have thought of one possible solution that I failed to mention that could be some type of middle ground to settle things down a bit. Getting rid of the transfer window all together is not an option in my opinion and would cause more harm than good. Perhaps keeping the transfer window open with is current dates with a slight tweak is the way to go. Here are my proposed changes:
1. Foreign transfers must be completed before the season starts.
2. The window will remain open until end of August/early September but only domestic transfers will be allowed.
This plan could easily have unintended consequences that I am not considering right now but would benefit the situation by forcing clubs to conclude their foreign business before the season starts. It would still allow for manager experimentation and squad changes to me made but those changes would have to be domestically based. There would still be transfer talk but limiting those transfers to domestic transfers would greatly reduce the current transfer three ring circus.
What are your thoughts? Is this a feasible solution or has the genie been let out of the bottle with the popularity of football in the global media?
UEFA President Michel Platini stated on French radio yesterday that Financial Fair Play (FFP) rules would be “eased” this summer. Eased is a very vague word and as with anything the devil is in the details and we will have to wait to see what exact changes are rolled out this summer. Early reports suggest that UEFA will allow for more club investment from owners as long as they can produce a clear and viable business plan to make that money back.
This would be a good step forward in fixing the unintended consequences of FFP that made upward mobility very difficult keeping the rich clubs rich and the poor clubs poor, due to the set limits of how much money that can be injected into a club by ownership. Gabrielle Marcotti produced one of the best analogies in an article yesterday explaining that the FFP limits on owner investment is much like if laws were in place that limited spending on home improvement projects for home owners who bought fixer-upper properties. Such a housing law would be outrageous but that is essentially what is going on in European football today making a Chelsea, PSG or Monaco situation almost impossible under current regulations so this change is quite welcome.
FFP for better or worse is here to stay as UEFA looks to make sure the business of football is done in a sustainable manner. This easing will probably be the first of many Financial Fair Play changes over the coming years until a proper balance good for all clubs both big and small can be found. The question is what will be the next unintended consequence or loophole that will pop up next?
The season is rapidly coming to an end and the title is in hand for Chelsea which means it’s time for a guard of honor! The Yanks are back to break it all down so take a listen. On this week’s episode:
- Burnley and QPR officially relegated
- Who will be the third relegated club?
- England gains extra Europa League slot
- UEFA hands down FFP punishments
- This Week In Daftness: Super Leo edition
- Championship Playoffs
- Silly season starts early
- And More!
Listen to/download the podcast below or listen on your mobile device via Stitcher, TuneIn or iTunes
TDY: Guard of Honor
Don’t look now but Iberia is now the focal point of European football. After yesterday’s Europa League semi-finals and the Champions League semi-finals on Tuesday and Wednesday both European cup finals are all Iberian affairs. For those of you that aren’t up to speed on their geography, Iberia is a peninsula in southern Europe made up from the countries Spain, Portugal, the micro-state of Andorra, portions of France and the British territory of Gibraltar.
The Champions League final is a Madrid Derby (El Derbi madrileño) where two clubs from smack dab in the middle of Iberia (Real Madrid and Atlético Madrid) will battle for Europe’s most prestigious trophy in Lisbon which happens to be on the west coast of Iberia. These two clubs have faced off 154 times with Real Madrid winning 85 of those matches, so Real and their riches are the clear favorites but anything can happen given the two clubs rivalry.
The “lesser” European final will take place in Italy which is not part of Iberia sadly, but is a peninsula as well (the Apennine) matching Benfica (whose stadium will host the Champions League final) and Sevilla. Benfica is a good story because they upset Italian powerhouse and Champions League dropout Juventus stopping them from playing in the Europa League final in their very own stadium in Turin.
Start planning your Iberian themed parties for May (I recommend a menu of tapas) and be ready for some entertaining football because both contests should be fairly intriguing. We will have more coverage of both finals here at TDY as the matches draw closer so be sure to check back.
Wait what year is this? Liverpool is on top of the English first division table and Manchester United is mid table? Did someone transport us back to 1979? It may feel like 1979 but it is very much 2014 and the Two Daft Yanks are back to cover the events of this weekend and much more. On this week’s episode:
– The story arc in the Premier League changes week to week
– English fans love them a banner
– Big Sam vs the West Ham boo birds
– UEFA Nations League, what is the real driving force?
– USMNT takes on Mexico in Phoenix on Wednesday night
Listen to or download the podcast below, or listen on your mobile device via Stitcher, TuneIn or iTunes
Two Daft Yanks: Episode 41