The people against Game 39 have been clever in the way they have manipulated the story.
Game 39 has been presented as something to be seen in isolation – a take it or leave it idea. If we all say “no” loud enough, then it goes away and that’s the end of that.
But in fact Game 39 must be seen in the context of alternatives – because Game 39 is part of a package of alternatives concerning international football.
Most importantly it is part of the fight back against the mindless stupid internationals that interrupt club football. International games were ok when most international teams were better than club teams. Now that is certainly not the case – it is hard to find any international teams that are better than the top 16 club sides in Europe. If Arsenal or AC Milan took on Brazil or Germany, there is no certainty who would win – but it could well be the club side. With most other country teams there is certainty – the club side would win. Arsenal v England… I can’t see England doing very well.
Game 39 is just part of a drive to get us away from the mind-numbing stupidity of international football. International teams are not only worse (sometimes – as in the cae of the teams from Gt Britain – a lot worse) than club teams, they use our players at our expense. When players like van Persie get injured playing for Holland, it is supporters like us who end up paying the price.
So part of the issue is, how do we throw aside the internationals? Now Game 39 won’t do this alone – but once the idea of club football being played on a broader scale is accepted, then the internationals lose their grip. Game 39 is just one proposal. Another is the European League. Another is Arsenal having a reserve team playing in Spain’s second division. Another it having an Arsenal on loan team playing in Colorado.
Game 39 might not happen – indeed it is possible to argue that no one ever seriously thought it would happen. We need to be aware of the overall context, and the benefits it brings. I think given the choice most Arsenal fans would sooner have (for example) a 38 game English league, followed by a 14 game European league, instead of the current situation with all the international interruptions.
Of course the bunch of crooks who run FIFA (see http://www.emiratesstadium.info/fifa.htm if you want to know more) will try and hang on to their internationals, their power, their money – but like all corrupt organisations they will eventually crumble, so that the clubs can fill the gap.
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