Ray Wilkins takes swipe at La Liga?

villa3Ray Wilkins seems a nice sort of bloke. He had a hugely successful career for club and country, and had spells playing abroad in France and Italy, away from the hustle and bustle of the English Leagues. He has since chiselled out a successful career as a coach at Chelsea.

So he is not the sort of person you would expect to go and criticise another European league. But that is what Wilkins appears to have done in the wake of David Villa’s decision to reject Wilkins’ club, Chelsea, and join the Galacticos 2.0 revolution at Real Madrid along with Kaka, who also snubbed the Blues.

Wilkins said:

“Do they want the challenge of the Premier League? It’s difficult to play in the Premier League as a foreign player, especially in the first year.

“Are some of these players taking the slightly softer option in going to Real Madrid and staying somewhere where they know and not taking up the challenge elsewhere? I don’t know. I’m just playing devil’s advocate.

“Our league is the best league in the world.”

Now maybe he is comparing Villa to himself, who took the brave move of moving abroad at a time when very few English players left their shores. However I still think his words are a little harsh on Villa and Kaka, after all I don’t think joining Real is the easy option, and maybe he is being a little naïve as to the size of playing for Real.

It is a chance after all to play for one of the biggest clubs in the world. Chelsea for all their riches, do not have the same reputation, history and heritage as Real. They may in a few years, but their success only really began 10 years ago with the rapid growth of the Premier League, Real’s story goes back much further.

But signing for Real is just the start. In no way are you made just by signing on the dotted line, you have to go and prove to the Madrid fans that you are worthy of pulling on the famous white shirt. Many people have tried and failed to cope with the white hot atmosphere in the Bernabeu. For any player, Spanish or otherwise, it is the ultimate challenge.

Wilkins’ comments will also again raise the age old question of which is the better league – though Wilkins seems sure of his choice. It is an argument you could wage until you are blue in the face.

In terms of raw passion and excitement I don’t think it is any better than in the Premier League. The pace of the game is frightening, you don’t have time to think. It is the ultimate test of stamina and strength.

La Liga is not as frenetic and at times adopts a more considered approach. But that means the levels of skill required to score are higher, this is where I feel La Liga has the edge. In terms of technical ability I think Spain holds the ace, whereas in England you are hustled and harried until you make a mistake, in Spain you will be undone by a piece of magic.

5 thoughts on “Ray Wilkins takes swipe at La Liga?”

  1. Don’t agree with that.Barcelona score goals at will in la Liga yet couldn’t score against Chelsea till the 180th minute.Madrid failed to score against Liverpool.Kanoute couldn’t score consistently in England and was instantly a 20 goal a season man in Spain,same with Forlan who’s this years Golden boot winner in Europe.The tides seem to change regularly and at the moment the prem is the best.

  2. I don’t he was being critical of la Liga at all! He was not comparing Chelsea and Real, he was comparing the challenge of moving to a foreign country to staying where you are.
    To that extent, Villa staying in Spain would be the “Easier” option.

  3. well one thing is sure, la liga is much, much better than the premiere league,the only difference is the marketing of the EPL..is much better…
    to all who thinks the opposite,just try to watch a match between Hull city and Newcastle…can u really watch more than 5 minutes with out changing the channel???? all the running with out one piece of skill and then scoring from the spot,or a corner kick,and if we are lucky some player will pass to another to shoot in…..really EPL???
    people really believe the myth of the EPL being the best in the world,may be because for the last few years the English teams reaches far in the champions league more than any other country….well off course they will when they have teams like Middlesbrough,Tottenham,Wigan,..etc
    beside the big four,who rarely loose or even draw against the other teams…they play in Europe,rested with no actual stress,regarding there league games,unlike Barcelona or Real madrid….whom they are forced to fill in the best team they have even against recreativo,or betis..if they want the three points…
    La liga is much, much more harder on the top teams in spain,even though Barca made the world think they can handle all teams with much ease even the mighty Real last season.
    but think again,didn’t even the big English teams sunk in the same pool with the Spanish teams….did any team in the world could stand against them(and please don’t say Chelsea in the CL,cuz in the first game the same referee mistakes,happened to Barcelona,even more)…
    one last thought,can you really enjoy a game in the English league with out the big four in it….???
    i don’t think so

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