The Independent London Newspaper
26th April 2019

SCORE BLIMEY: Costa living, and how fans’ loyalty is being sold out...


    Published: 19 January, 2017

    PITY the Premier League footballers: they need to earn more than most of us each week for a good reason, and all we do is snarl at them for being greedy and disloyal. You see, because of the limitations of the human body, they are stripped of the golden privilege afforded to most others, of working in their chosen field until they are 72.

    The poor sods will have to down tools at 36 or 37, and with retirement and the boredom of endless days at the golf club on the horizon almost as soon as they start work, they are like frantic worker ants using a tiny 17-year period or so of work to stockpile as much money as possible. They need mountains of it, if possible, just so they don’t have to worry about how long they will have the heating on in their silver-haired years. 

    They’ll be checking for red-sticker goods each evening at closing time in the supermarket, if they do not maximise every single penny out of their playing career.

    “I was only earning £150,000 a week back in 2017,” you can hear them as pensioners, lamenting. “If only I had gone somewhere for £200,000 a week, then I’d have been able to afford a stairlift.”

    But, of course, it’s not like that, is it? If you earned £150,000 a week even for just one year, the rest of your life is going to be in easy street. You’ll get the car, the girl, there’s no need to panic. The stories we have seen this transfer window are soooo lop-sided in terms of salaries that are being talked about, it might even make you feel sorry for Chelsea, who are clinging onto their star, brute striker Diego Costa against an apparent offer of £30million. Yes, that’s right, feel sorry for Chelsea, the club who twisted football’s order not by organic growth, prudent finances and careful scouring, but, das right, throwing as much money at the world’s best players until they agreed to score goals for them.

    But even Chelsea cannot compete with the grotesque monopoly money tempting players in their prime to go to an inferior league to try and win less prestigious prizes. You have to ask, why do they need the money? Why does Alexis Sanchez – for Arsenal are at risk of falling victim too – need more money?

    If he left to win the Italian league with Juventus, fair enough, but if he, or any other player of his and Costa’s calibre left simply to fill bank balances which will never fall overdrawn two days before pay day, we will once again be left wondering what the point of all our blind hero worship was.


    Premier League

    If Premier League clubs were successful in European competitions then the high pay our footballers receive might be justified. The fact is English clubs have not won very much at all for years which reflects mediocre standards.

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