Todd Boehly has been in charge of Chelsea Football Club for less than four months, and he’s already trying to Americanize the Premier League.

Speaking at a conference on Tuesday, the American businessman who is new to the sport of soccer, talked at length about the changes he envisions for the English league. As a co-owner of the LA Dodgers baseball team and minority owner of LA Lakers basketball team, it appears that Boehly thinks he’s well equipped to suggest improvements to the world’s most popular sports league.

“Ultimately, I hope the Premier League takes a little bit of a lesson from American sports,” said Boehly. “MLB did their all-star game in L.A. this year. We made $200 million from a Monday and a Tuesday.”

Boehly’s concept for his all-star game is a north versus south battle in England. In addition to the all-star game, Boehly suggested a playoff system to determine relegation from England’s top flight.

Jurgen Klopp’s reaction to Todd Boehly’s comments

After Tuesday’s UEFA Champions League match against Ajax, Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp was asked by a reporter what he thought about Boehly’s wacky ideas. At first, Klopp thought the ideas were a joke.

Klopp raised several reasons why Boehly’s ideas are dumb.

First, professional footballers already play too many games, so there’s no time in the schedule to fit in an all-star game.

Second, the concept cheapens the sport by creating a meaningless, inauthentic game. Like Klopp said in the press conference (see below), “Does he want to bring the Harlem Globetrotters as well and make them play against a football team?”

Third, the Liverpool manager explains that no one wants to see an all-star game, let alone a northern versus southern all-star game.

Obviously, Boehly has no idea what he’s talking about. Instead, his ideas are driven by how he can, in his mind, help the league’s clubs make more money, including his own.

Many of the Americans who are owners of Premier League clubs in the United Kingdom have worked hard for years to earn credibility. For example, just a few months ago, 50% of Premier League clubs were owned by Americans (including minor ownership).

From here on out, hopefully Boehly will focus his attention on improving Chelsea’s results on the pitch instead of trying to talk about Americanizing the game of soccer.

Photo credit: IMAGO / Eibner