Perhaps I’m in the minority, but Rangers and Celtic playing in England just doesn’t appeal to me.
That doesn’t mean to say I’m against it, but there is just no “wow” factor in it for me.
Of course, the money Rangers and Celtic would receive from participation in England’s top flight is massive to compared to the earnings we have just now in Scotland. However, the SPL isn’t just lacking in money. It also lacks competition.
We would get that competition in England, but I don’t fancy watching Rangers going to the likes of Old Trafford and The Emirates Stadium playing for a point.
Does the English Premier League benefit from Rangers and Celtic competing in their league? In my opinion, no. The EPL does not need, or want, the Old Firm.
So, with all the fantasizing about playing in England, lets add legs to that fantasy, and fantasize a bit more.
Lets have a Euro League.
12 teams. Two from Belgium; two from Sweden; two from Austria; two from Scotland; two from Denmark; and two from Romania.
It would look something like this.
I have chosen successful teams from their respective leagues. Although all teams have been successful in their league, the leagues aren’t that widely watched or recognised. Thus meaning that instead of Rangers and Celtic joining a league that only benefits themselves, forming a Euro League benefits a host of teams.
Using those teams, there are derby games galore. Something which could also appeal to neutral viewers.
You might ask what happens to leagues like the SPL and the Belgian Pro League when you take these teams out.
Well, let me theorise a bit more about the format of this Euro League.
The top 2 enter the Champions League at the qualifying rounds and teams placed third and fourth enter the Europa League.
What? Relegation you say? Not possible?
Ways and means.
Say for example, Celtic and Club Brugge finished bottom. Just an example!
Celtic would go into a play off tie against the winners of the SPL, and likewise with Club Brugge playing the winners of the Belgian Pro League.
Aside from the competition aspect and potential money that may come from it, we may see a different style of football being played from both Rangers and Celtic. Playing against European opposition every week may mean better performances in the Champions League and/or the Europa League. Something which I don’t see happening in England.
Furthermore, it could be a draw to players wanting to play in a Euro League against different teams and experience something different. It may also attract potential buyers to the clubs involved.
A Euro League would be something new. It would attract attention. It has a certain degree of a ‘wow’ factor. Playing against European opposition and having a better brand of football would excite me.
I understand there will be flaws in this. Namely, the fans. Supporters already fork out a fair amount on following their team as it is, so add in travelling all over Europe for games, and accommodation, it would become even more costly.
If it was to be trialled for a season, and it was successful, it may grow and perhaps a second tier of the league could be added.
However, I am only fantasizing. And while fantasies rarely come true, if I had to pick between the Euro League Fantasy, or the English Premier League fantasy, give me the Euro League every time.