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Gerrard and the European Super League


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3 hours ago, Rousseau said:

It's seems the majority are content to remain a big fish in a small pond. Fair enough. 

 

I retain a dream of expanding into a bigger pond. I think with our fan base and stature, we have so much more potential. 

 

Success is measured on the European stage. The Scottish league is a joke: Celtic just won 8.75 in-a-row, but what's that worth? 

 

The sum of our ambition is to get into the group stages of the CL--and that's peak success. This season has been stupendous, but in the grand scheme of things it's still the second tier European competition. 

 

I think if we were in a bigger pond we'd go further. 

 

To be honest, though, that could be as part of a better Scottish league--if we somehow managed to become a better league, with better football, producing better players etc. which seems... unlikely.  

And that comes down to money to attract the better players while producing quality youngsters around them. But it isn't easy.

 

They have messed about with the structure many times over the last 10 years, but has anything really improved or actually gone backwards? Certainly Aberdeen, Hearts and Hibs have all gone backwards leaving Gers and that other lot as the only two possible SPL winners. But that in itself does not make a weak league as it;s the same in many European leagues, Portugal with Benfica or Porto, Spain with Barca and Real (occaisionally with Athletic but usually not) Germany largely Bayern, France, PSG and Italy with Juve or the two Milan sides - across Europe their isn't many leagues except the EPL that has 4 or 5 candidates for the title. 

 

How do you improve the Scottish League to make it more competative and attract more investment? 

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1 hour ago, Rousseau said:

What's the price of trying? No trophies in the immediate future? If that is really your conditions for supporting Rangers, then you're not much of a fan... :ninja: 

 

We'll need to agree to disagree. 

Iterative improvement year on year and honest endevour is something good to aim for after the mess of the last 5-7 years.

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2 hours ago, Rousseau said:

What's the price of trying?

Of all people, Rangers fans know only too well the price of reaching beyond the length of our arm. Can't believe you asked the question.

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1 hour ago, Bill said:

Of all people, Rangers fans know only too well the price of reaching beyond the length of our arm. Can't believe you asked the question.

Oh, come on. That whole post was tongue-in-cheek. 

 

Being badly run has very little to do with the 'pond' you inhabit... to put it poorly. 

 

I'll leave you to it. We're just going around in circles. 

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IF we were to go down there I doubt if they would take us directly into EPL and it would be games against lesser teams in Championship possibly.so maybe still benefit us but going there is still a no for me.

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16 minutes ago, JohnMc said:

Queens Park won the league at a canter, not only are they now professional but the core of their side is also full-time. That will give them an advantage next season too as League 1 is largely part-time. It would be no surprise to see QP in The Championship within a few seasons. 

 

Unfortunately being badly run is inherent in football. Football is almost unique in its ability to attract and accept incompetence, nepotism and corruption at its administrative levels. I was told of a club who appointed a former player to a senior position within its PR department. Not only did this former player have no qualifications for the job he was literally unable to turn on a computer and use basic Microsoft programmes. In no other industry would that man be even considered for a job in that department. This type of appointment is endemic in football. The current Chief Executive of the SFA, Ian Maxwell, has only spent 10 years in any kind of administrative position, yet apparently he's the best qualified person in the world to head up our entire association and its nearly £40 million turnover. 

 

Whatever his many faults Sir David Murray was a shrewd and capable businessman, as is Dermot Desmond. Yet Celtic will lose millions this year and I don't need to remind anyone of what state Sir David's tenure left Rangers finances. Being well run in football is very, very difficult if you actually want to challenge for titles and trophies. Look at the finances of the top teams in England. Despite having access to an almost bottomless pit of TV, sponsorship and prize money less than six sides in that league breakeven on a regular basis and none of them challenge for trophies. Leicester City, the one side who've been able to break the 'big club' monopoly in England lost £20 million in their last published accounts. Occasionally one of the big six clubs will make a profit, but that usually involves a run to at least the semi-finals of the Champion's League, and it doesn't factor in the debt they've built up or the colossal investment put in by owners to get them to that point in the first place. 

 

As football stands it's impossible to apply normal business rules to it and expect success, if success is measured by on-field performance. The vagaries of prize-money and the effect of a down-turn in form make projecting beyond the immediate future near impossible. Liverpool, arguably the best side on the planet last season, will lose a fortune next season if they fail to qualify for the Champion's League as looks increasingly unlikely. Who would have predicted that this time last year? I can well understand why senior executives brought into football from 'normal' industries take one look at it and decide that even the remote possibility of not qualifying for the Champion's League and access to its money is a risk that must be managed. Which is where ideas like the Super League or even the proposed changes to the Champion's League come from. If you're the Rangers finance director do you pass a budget that allows for Champion's League football? If you don't the budget for signing and paying players will be significantly less, making even qualifying for the tournament even harder and perhaps giving our main rivals an opportunity to claw back some of the lost ground. If you do give a budget that allows for Champion's League football and we sign players based on that income what happens if we don't qualify? Look across the city to see what happens. 

 

For me this is why applying many best business practices to football is a waste of time. It's also why I've become so wary of phrases like "investment is needed to progress" and "can utilise our fan base and stature, and be provided with the investment that some PL sides receive, we can move up in the world" because, and I'm mean no disrespect, but they're meaningless phrases when faced with the reality of football in the UK. 

 

The reason German club football is healthier is because the entire structure has embraced a different ownership or economic model. Their league is still dominated by one big club, but big clubs can be relegated and smaller clubs can progress without fear of bankruptcy. It's not just the fabled 50% plus one ownership model, although that's a huge part of it, it's the culture around the sport where the focus is on the supporters as much as the players. That simply isn't the case in this country, and hasn't been for a long time. We're playing a cup tie at 6.30pm on a Sunday today and the only legal way I can watch the match is to subscribe to yet another TV channel on top of the the main two I'm already expected to subscribe too, find me a supporter who thinks that's a good idea. I remain unconvinced the popular uprising sparked by the Super League will lead to any genuine change in how football is governed or run in this country, but who knows, maybe it's a turning point. 

I didn't arrive at this overnight. It's taken decades for me to realise what I actually want from Rangers. They're currently providing it. Unfortunately our finances remain precarious, but at least by focussing on football we've a chance of selling a player or three and balancing the books this summer. How that leaves us for next season only time will tell. In the meantime I look forward to simply being entertained, and that can happen at any level of football. 

Thanks for this.

 

You're saying that to be successful, a team needs to be 'badly run', or at least push the boat out, and that's not something you want to see for Rangers. You want to be entertained, which is what we're getting now. 

 

It seems like I'm being accused of being unimpressed by our success this season? That is not the case. If we have this level of success every few years or so, I'll be more than happy. I've been delighted by our performance this season.

 

Fair enough, we've been burned quite badly for speculating, pushing the boat out, in the past. That's certainly not something I want to see repeated. However, there are many examples of teams being well-run, living within their means, and achieving success. German sides are the archetype, but even sides like Southampton in the recent past (they've struggled recently because their recruitment has been poor and injuries), or Ajax. Good sides, living within their means. That's all I want. But, Southampton, arguably, have a better quality of squad than us--and Ajax and German sides certainly do. That frustrates me.  

 

Entertainment can be separated from the level at which we play--one can be entertained in League 2 and CL finals (in theory...). So, surely it doesn't matter if we play in Scotland or in the PL or in an Atlantic League? 

 

To see a better level of quality, in the playing squad and its performance, you'd need to be in a bigger pond. 

 

I too want to be entertained by Rangers, but I also want to see better quality players, see more success in the bigger competitions. At the moment we hit a wall. We could appoint the next big managerial genius tomorrow, but we'd still hit a wall with the level of player we can afford. So, if there is a chance of us moving to a bigger pond, to then attract and afford that better calibre of player, then I'm in favour of it. I don't think I'll ever change in that regard. 

 

Like I said elsewhere, if there is a sudden change, whereby Scottish football improves and becomes that bigger pond, then that's the same for me; I'd be delighted. 

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21 minutes ago, Rousseau said:

I feel like I'm on my own here, p*ssing against the wind!

 

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No you're not, but we've been brought up to expect progress and success - and ambition. Problem is some supporters are still emotionally scarred by the events of the last few years. Me, I was at my lowest after we were given a two-year ban just after winning the Cup Winners Cup. We should be at least aiming for that kind of international achievement at least. Beating a poor Keltic side year after year is to me small satisfaction.

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ok heres my 2 bobs worth .

 

Firstly I am and was totally against any closed shop league , whether it super , dooper or whatever , there must be relegation and promotion irrespective , its one of the things that makes football great no matter how poor you may be , theres always the chance you just might succeed , also no matter how good you might just crash and burn , its what gives us the fear in big games and I love it .

 

Second , this mock indignation , that was shown down south last week was nothing other than covering their own arses , they give not a jot about the fans , this was about the other 14 losing out , end off.

 

Lastly , I totally understand wanting to better ourselves and get more money , however at what cost , to see bang average players getting paid a fortune with no commitment or care for the club , you only need see what this season has meant to our current squad , its what we love about them  , they get it .

 

we strive for success and greatness , down south 17th spot is what the majority would settle for at the season start , not for me , sorry .

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