Author- Jayakrishnan Pillai.
Which football league do you follow? BPL? La Liga? Turkey Super lig? Different leagues have something on the offering. When it comes to the ‘Thrill’ factor, which league would you opt for? Thrill factor is directly related to the competitiveness of teams in a league. Say for example the premier league: all teams are capable of upsetting the other on a given day. The competition is wide open. Teams have very little points separating them from each other. Let us analyze the leagues and come up with a list drawn on the ‘Thrill’ factor. Note that I wrote about the leagues that I follow often.
Premier League: The Premier League has it all- the stars, the big teams and of course the smaller teams who are capable enough to defeat the biggies! If you are a Premier League manager, you can’t just bank on your past glory or heroics. Ask the likes of AVB, who came riding on glory only to be rudely brought back to reality- the Premier League. Earlier the league boasted of the big four- Man Utd, Arsenal, Liverpool and Chelsea. But now, the cash rich Man City and the impressive Tottenham have joined the ‘elite league’. So much is the competition that Arsenal could be denied a Champions League spot this time around! Teams like Swansea, West Brom too have impressed this season. Swansea, notably have created some high profile upsets over two seasons. Writing off a team is utter foolishness when it comes to this league. Rafa knows it well, thanks to QPR! The author believes that this is the league that is high on thrills and spills! It is my favorite league.
Serie A: I think it is a slow paced league, but highly competitive. For many non followers, it is just AC Milan, Juve and Inter fighting it out. Ever heard of Lazio? Or Udinese? Napoli? Fiorentina? This league has many clubs that are on an equal plane when it comes to individual players and team strength. Teams like: Lazio, Napoli, Udinese, Roma, Fiorentina, Palermo are more or less on the same level. Any team can beat the other on their night. However this league is not as popular as PL and La Liga. Teams like Juventus, Milan are the toast of this league. Rich history? I think very few teams in Europe can match their accomplishments. Don’t forget Inter Milan, who did the impossible 3 years ago. The present financial status of the league is not in a good state and the match fixing scandals are not helping the situation too. My second favorite league, one which I always try to catch up with.
Bundesliga: I know many folks for whom Bundesliga was just about Bayern Munich ( one of my fav team!). That was until Jurgen Klopp and his troops came and kicked them right in the balls! Literally! What I’m trying to say is that the standard of the teams in this league is better than what many actually think about them. The fan-base of many Bundesliga clubs are the most passionate and loyal. Even the comparatively smaller clubs have their stands packed during home matches. Bayern Munchen, Schalke, Dortmund- all have been consistent in European stage. Considerable stars of the German National team ply their trade within this league.
La Liga- You know well about the FifPro World XI. An all Spanish League affair! The Ballon D’ Or finalists also being Liga players! So this is the best league in the world right? No! A league is not just made of two teams! The problem with this league is that the two financially strong clubs- Barca and Real are eating into the revenues of others. Don’t get it? Consider television revenues, these two giants eat up the major chunk up. The result- clubs like Atletico, Valencia, Bilbao have to look for other means of revenue. Other means includes selling up their star players. You could always see Matas, Silvas and Villas being sold to cover up their debts. Yes there is the occasional upset- Real being defeated by a small club or the same happening with Barca. But you don’t see this happen on a regular basis. Rafa did the unimaginable with Valencia. But that’s history!
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