This Week In Soccer: Player Power, Bill Shankly and Changing US/UK Media Rights [VIDEO]

We’re excited to announce the launch of a brand-new video show on World Soccer Talk entitled This Week In Soccer. The first episode is now available below and on YouTube.

The concept behind This Week In Soccer is simple. Each week, we’ll take an in-depth look at the hottest topics in world soccer each week. For example, we examine three subjects on the inaugural episode:

One. The role of player power and whether the transfer window should be abolished.

Two. In light of David Peace’s book on Bill Shankly, is legendary Liverpool manager Bob Paisley unfairly ignored? And…

Three. The changing landscape in soccer media rights in both the UK (Sky Sports and BT Sport) and US (NBC Sports, as well as new daily shows from FOX Sports and ESPN).

The guests on this week’s episode are:

Richard Farley (

Kartik Krishnaiyer (Senior Writer, World Soccer Talk)

Laurence McKenna (EPL Talk Podcast host), and

Christopher Harris (Editor/Publisher, World Soccer Talk).

Instead of trying to cram a dozen topics into 30 minutes, This Week In Soccer is a long-form video that examines each topic in greater detail.

This Week In Soccer is just one of many developments this summer. In addition to the recent video documentary we produced on the history and legacy of Tampa Bay Rowdies, we have more brand-new video programs coming soon to expand our video network. Meanwhile, the EPL Talk Podcast will continue to be released each week.

Subscribe to the World Soccer Talk channel on YouTube. And feel free to share us your feedback on the first episode in the comments section below.

23 thoughts on “This Week In Soccer: Player Power, Bill Shankly and Changing US/UK Media Rights [VIDEO]”

  1. Good effort lads. Enjoyable discussion but with four faces made for radio, maybe you guys need a Rebecca Lowe!

    This might be more fun if you made it live with interaction from the faithful. Just a thought.

    1. Thanks for the feedback Smokey. We’ll consider whether we can make it a live event in the future to incorporate interaction from the readers. Great idea.

  2. You have got to be kidding me! Good idea for anyone with sleeping problems put this on just as you want to go to bed. You’ll be asleep within minutes.

    1. Brian, fair dues, but if you’re watching it (or anything) at 1.45am on a Thursday morning in England, it’s time for bed 😉

  3. Gaffer, as a loyal reader and listener to all the pods who rarely comments, I have a few real concerns about this thing.

    First off, the video is entirely too long. I understand the topics may be interesting to some but 3 topics in over an hour??? ESPNFC is able to cover the whole day’s worth of news in a half hour. Second off, why no discussion of actual results from the weekend or a look ahead to the start of the Prem? Germany started this past week and so did France. Third, by putting Kartik and Richard on a show together you are going to alienate all the US Soccer fans who HATED those two in the past incarnation of this website. You are turning off much of the audience right away. If I recall, did you not have to apologize for a podcast those two did with Jamie Trecker because they were so over the top in everything they said about the US team?

    In summary, would we watch a long boring video with two of the three pundits being polarizing figures?

    Some of the other changes on this site are positive. You are covering more topics than ever, the EPL coverage is better than ever and despite my criticism of his USMNT views, Kartik Krishnaiyer’s video on the Tampa Bay Rowdies, the team of my childhood was top shelf, one of the best videos on soccer in the US I have seen in quite sometime.

    I wonder why this weekly show is needed and whether this new project which will undoubtedly take time away from your good work on the site with news, sidetrack Laurence from the EPL Talk podcast and take Kartik away from producing more good documentaries and interviews like the Rowdies one. Perhaps this show has a niche audience you are attempting to reach but maybe it is a niche you won’t find.

    Just one guys opinion. Take it for what it is worth.

    1. Thanks Tony for the feedback. I appreciate you taking time to post your response.

      The video is meant to be long-form so it differentiates itself from ESPN FC. Instead of giving short shrift to a dozen topics, we feel that this format allows us to dig deeper on just a few topics.

      The video series is also meant to have a longer shelf-life so it’s not dated. So if someone wants to go back to this video in six months from now, the topics will still be relevant and informative instead of being too dated (with results, scores, etc). We’re focusing on big topics each week.

      Both Kartik and Richard are big fans of US soccer each in their own ways. Richard moved to Portland to live closer to the Timbers, while Kartik is a supporter of US soccer.

      Plus one important thing to remember is that the guests will rotate each week, so the people involved won’t always be the same cast.

      I appreciate your comments. Yes, we’re focusing on targeting a niche audience. The EPL Talk Podcast will continue. Plus Kartik will have some news on Thursday about another video program that I think you and other readers will be interested in. And I’ll keep on slogging away on working on the site, etc. (It’s great for me to be back in front of the camera. It’s been too long).

  4. Good analysis and decent effort by the group.

    Thank god for Laurence being a rational counter-balance to Kartik’s and Richard’s bizarre rationales for abolishing the transfer window and for his much needed defense/explanation of Shankly’s legacy and meaning to Liverpool, relative to Paisley’s admittedly under-credited tenure at the club.

  5. It’s a “modern” thing I suppose but I’m just not going to have the time or interest to site and watch a long form video. Also those “faces for radio” being right up in your face is too much to handle.

    You do need to figure out some better lighting in general for you locations and perhaps try to get the camera’s a little more away from directly being in your face.

    I pretty much agree with the other Tony’s feedback above. It’s a risky proposition to branch into other areas that seem unnecessary, the combo of podcasts (which I can’t listen to) and the excellent site might perhaps be enough.

    1. Hi Tony,

      Thanks for the feedback. Noted and we have taken a lot of this onboard behind the scenes too.

      Just wondering why you can’t listen to the podcast. Technical or content reasons?



  6. the transfer window is a recent development and newer fans may be wed to it but it is not an outlandish suggestion to eliminate it. When we didn’t have a window we didn’t have all this intrigue and need for deadline deals allowing agents and players to hold clubs hostage. Of course it is possible modern footballers are more aggressive in what they want so player power may not dissipate with the death of the transfer window but I am willing to see what happens if we eliminate the window. The current window also discriminates against leagues, like our major league here in the states that for whatever reason cannot correspond to the European calender. That is another problem.

    1. No, the EPL Talk Podcast will continue on a weekly basis instead of twice weekly. So we’ll now have three shows a week — This Week In Soccer, Voices of Soccer and the EPL Talk Podcast.

      1. I’ll give it a go Gaffer but losing a pod a week is disappointing. I’ve really appreciated the preview and review pods over the years and knowing I won’t have that enhancing my love of the sport hurts. Hopefully the new shows make up for the loss.

  7. Kartik, I never said it was. But to Laurence’s point, how would eliminating the transfer window stop Bale’s agent keeping his client unsettled throughout the season? Which happened often in the past.

    Saying the transfer window is unfair to the MLS or the Brazilian league, is like saying a lunch time match kickoff in the Premier league is unfair to fans in LA.

    Mr Farley can’t seem to understand why a club that paid millions to put a player under contract for millions more in guaranteed money, would not be ok with a player walking out 6 months later for a “lifestyle change.”

  8. Thanks for the discussion. I don’t mind the “radio faces” one bit. I put my headphones on and listened while working…

  9. Face for radio? Come on fellas, lets save the grade school insults for the playground and use this as a chance to help make a better show.

    I think the overarching point people are making is no one is quite sure why the video aspect of the program is necessary. Even if it was Cristiano and Becks doing a talk show, eventually it just isn’t very visually stimulating. This can be improved fairly easily. If you are making a talk show of this length then videos, graphics, images, etc are all necessary. That said, I love the idea of ‘shelf life’ mentioned by Chris, and I think that has a lot of appeal. However, if the video itself lacks a certain ‘zing’ factor to attract initial interest, having shelf life will be a moot point.

    I don’t think it’s a stretch to assume the majority of your podcast listeners did so via their mobile. Not only does audio pod-casting suck up less data, but it loads quicker and is easier to shuffle through. So! My general feeling is I think the program would benefit a lot from giving us more of a reason to ‘watch’ the discussion as oppose to merely listen.

    1. Hi Trevor,

      Thanks for the feedback. You’ve made some great points, we acknowledged a lot of this behind the scenes and want to develop this so keep the feedback coming. World Soccer Talk is a good place for feedback and us listening so we’ll develop quickly and tweak as we go. We are fortunately enough to do this so it’s time to make something to be proud of.



      1. Cheers Laurence, the best thing about WFB is how accessible you lot are when it comes to listening to our feedback and suggestions. Encouraging to know community involvement will continue to be so pivotal. I have no doubt it’ll be a success.

  10. I think the general idea is a great one. The in depth analysis is welcome. Plus, if viewers don’t like the video, you can still just listen to it, right? And radio faces?? pfff, Laurence is a total dream boat. Who knew?
    The one problem was the discussion on TV shows. It seemed kinda lite on content because everybody willing to watch this is probably also willing to watch those shows and make up their own mind. So, I’m wondering if the video/cast/log/whatever will be more focused on result on the field once the league starts? I mean, as someone who doesn’t get to watch every match and does not have enough interest to try, the best thing this site offers is a place to stay up to date on the teams I’m not following or who aren’t on American TV on the regular.
    Once again, great job.

  11. I genuinely enjoyed this format. Personally, I think it’s odd that people are arguing that you should make it more like every other football review available. I enjoy those – and I include the EPL Talk podcast in that – but I appreciate an attempt to do something different. I will miss the preview podcasts though. They were part of my weekly rotation of podcasts to work out to, but I guess I’ll live. :)

    And frankly, I’m a Liverpool supporter, and it was a breath of fresh air to listen to a football show without the endless Luis Suarez speculation. I will take twenty-five minutes of Shankly/Paisley discussion over that any day. I found the last topic about football coverage the most interesting. It’s a topic on the forefront of my mind since NBC has begun airing the EPL, and one I haven’t seen discussed to death (SUAREZ).

    [As an aside, when Richard (I believe) said that Fox Soccer talked down to the viewer in their coverage, I turned to my friend and remarked that they were like half the guys I, as a woman, encounter in sports bars who try to talk to me about football. “Now, that’s Daniel Sturridge. He’s a forward – that’s one of the ones who stands in front and tries to score.” Don’t be that guy, Fox Soccer.]

    I liked the earlier suggestion of trying a live conversation at some point, though I think you should probably work all of the kinks out of the system before attempting that. Also, having a female voice involved every now and again wouldn’t be out of the question, right? I promise some of us even know what we’re talking about.

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