The Collapse of the Premier League Football Empire

What is going on in the Premier League? Just as the Roman Empire spread itself too thin on the ground and collapsed amid much corruption and double crossing it seems that the English Premier League is awash with dirty deeds and mis-appropriated funds.

Many of the top Football Clubs have been snapped up by mega-rich billionaires, with the appeal and prosperity of Europes wealthiest league dependent upon it's ability to reach further into the corners of the world, just as the Roman Empire did, to fund the ever increasing salaries (£200,000/week anyone?) and dreams of the clubs.

It seems to me that Football in England is now falling under the same hype and copycat behaviour as the crazy Dot-com boom and bust or the Californian Gold Rush. Why on earth are wealthy benefactors buying into the Premier League Football teams.

After Manchester United, Chelsea and Liverpool have been snapped up, Arsenal are sure to follow. After that though reports of other teams being bought are appearing all over the news.

West Ham have been bought and are being accused of driving Premier League wages sky high, reaching an all time high of £1.1 Million Average Salary for a Premier League Football player. West Ham are a long way from being a top 4 club and the investment needed to reach this plateau is enormous. Yet the hammers are not alone. Blackburn Rovers are reported to be in talks with an anonymous US investor, Manchester City are being courted by the former Thai Prime Minister and Birmingham City are thought to be in talks with Lakshmi Mittal, the worlds 5th richest man.

With all due respect to all these teams, there can only be one Premiership winner and only a few clubs who will make it into Europe where they can boost their Broadcasting Revenues. Manchester City, Blackburn and Birmingham City are not going to leapfrog Manchester United, Chelsea or Arsenal in the near future unless the worlds 5th richest man does decide to duke out, head to head with Abramovich. That would be a battle worth watching. Maybe Paul Allen, the co-founder of Microsoft could join the battle also after his reported interest in buying Southampton. He is Americas 5th richest man and between them these 3 could fight a great Premiership Cash match, pushing the salaries of the premier league football gladiators closer to the £200,000/week mark.

A book about the Leeds United fall from grace should be posted to all prospective Football Club purchasers, with West Ham and Newcastle United surely the most vulnerable.

Newcastle United Football Club in constant crisis and flux is destined for a choppy future, with millions wasted on players, and manager after manager coming through the door. Jean Alain Boumsong, signed from Rangers for an incredible fee of £8 Million seems to sum up the ludicrous amounts of money flowing through and out of the game into the pockets of the Premiership Emperors. Quite incredibly this £8 Million player was signed by Rangers for NOTHING and sold to Newcastle for a handsome profit.

United, a club that attracts a massive fan base is caught up to its neck in the corruption scandal, with one of its former managers (Graeme Souness) and its current manager (Sam Allardyce) both implicated deeply in the corruption and the club itself guilty of inconsistencies in its evidence to the report. Mike Ashleys continued purchasing of Newcastles shares must be seen as very risky.

And the agents who have played a pivotal role in this upward spiral of benevolent behaviour are now being pulled up by the independent report from Lord Stevens, targeting numerous mis-handling of transfer by Football Clubs, Managers and Agents alike.

It seems that the foundations for the fall of the Premier League Empire, although not imminent yet are being laid and the "House of Premiership" is on shaky grounds.

When the dust settles on this latest round of inflated cash incentives for the clubs, we will see a lot of losers and I fear business as usual for Manchester United, Chelsea, Arsenal and Liverpool. Many successful businessman will be licking their wounds over bad Premier League investments ruing the day they joined the 2006/2007/2008 Premiership Boom.

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