Scudamore: Premier League is Not to Blame For England’s Failures: Nightly Soccer Report

Premier League chief executive Richard Scudamore has gone on the attack against the Football Association, and has expressed frustration that the league is being blamed for England’s failures at European Championships and World Cup tournaments.

According to The Guardian newspaper, Scudamore said:

“It frustrates me enormously because it is so palpably not true. We are putting on a competition that the best players in the world want to come here and play in.

“It is not my fault the country is only 60 million. There are 212 countries playing this game. We are blessed to have 20 of the world’s largest 50 clubs. Within that 20, between three and five of the biggest 10. There are only 10 football clubs vying for this top talent.

“The idea an England team is going to be put together that will somehow beat the world is logically and mathematically implausible. We can put out a good team, just like Andy Murray can win Wimbledon and Justin Rose can win the US Open. Good things do happen but they are not an automatic right.

“The whole thing seems to me that if England don’t win something it is someone else’s fault. I have never, in my 15 years with the Premier League, never said the Premier League’s success, or lack of, is someone else’s fault. You have to make it yourself.

“Let’s run the reverse argument. Where does that leave the people at the FA in terms of their accountability? It can’t be our fault. It is bigger than us. It is not the Premier League who ripped up the playing fields. It is not the Premier League that didn’t put the education into schools that the government should have done. That is not the Premier League’s fault.

“Clearly, we have a job to do. We have not won the World Cup since 1966. We didn’t start until 1992. What happened between 1966 and 1992? Whose fault was that? The whole thing is immensely frustrating. It cannot be our fault on any level.”

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6 thoughts on “Scudamore: Premier League is Not to Blame For England’s Failures: Nightly Soccer Report”

  1. 100% agree with Scudamore. Can’t believe how hilariously upside-down the idea that England has some sort of divine right to be a Top 1, 2, 4 or even 10 team is, and how long they have continued to believe so.

    I’m half English, half Aussie, and I love watching both international teams play, but I know that Australia are never going to win a World Cup. You learn to roll with the punches. England, at some point, will win a major tournament, but the English themselves need to stop getting so worked up every time they get knocked out of a tournament. You are permitted to see where they could improve etc etc but there needs to be a point where you can accept that you have no divine right to be beating the world’s best day-in, day-out.

  2. Doesn’t every country have some sort of blame game going between the national team and the domestic league? It’s either that the league is too good and isn’t providing enough opportunities for domestic players OR that the domestic league isn’t good enough and the players scatter around the world and then have a hard time coming together as a national team.

  3. Nattering about the English team has been going on at least since the 1954 loss to Uruguay. Perhaps it was given a temporary rest 12 years after that, but I’m sure there were lots of complaints about something even that year.

  4. Scudamore is doing what any CEO would do – look after his own interests. No doubt the Premier League has become a very successful global brand during his tenure. But at the same time, the Englland team is the weakest I can remember and I go back to the 1970s. That is the disconnect I have. A successful league should produce more home grown talent that it is currently doing. Instead clubs have become incentivized to focus on short term solutions. To wave the cheque book instead of develop ing players. The average manger tenure is now 2 years. Foreign players have flooded the game. Even Gary Neville says we have reached a tipping point. Scudamore is blind to all this. He thinks he doesn’t need a successful England team in order for the EPL to be successful. I think he is wrong in the long term. Already fans in the lower leagues are starting to despise the Top tier. There is something wrong when you don’t want to get promoted for fear your club might be turned into the next Portsmouth.

    Don’t get me wrong, Scudamore is not totally to blame. The FA has been a joke for years. They have not done enough to grow the game at the grass roots level. And now they let a suit like Scudamore walk all over them. They are getting what they deserve. Greg Dyke won’t stop it. He’s a tv man not a football man. He probably loves the EPL more than Scudamore. Somehow these two have to form a partnership that works for their combined interests instead of the us versus them attitude. If they don’t, England will be just like Scotland is now.

  5. England players simply do not play enough together as a team. They don’t play in friendly tournaments and expect to gel in a few games before major competitions. It pains me to say but there are probably a dozen better national teams than England.

  6. The homogenous makeup of Germany and Spain’s domestic leagues is frequently cited as a major reason for the success of the German and Spanish National Teams. Those national teams are actually benefitting from a small handful of super teams such as Barcelona, Bayern Munich, and to a less extent Real Madrid and Dortmund. This is particularly true in Spain’s case. They borrowed Barcelona’s playing style because most of their players have played with it and each other since childhood.

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