Sunday, February 17, 2008

The 39th Step

(Premier League fans are disgruntled by plans to play the 39th game of their league abroad)
And so this kite is gaining height
And gathering momentum
There’s such reward to play abroad
That no-one can prevent ‘em.
The Asian pound is lying ‘round,
Just dyin’ to be collected
And money talks – it yells and squawks -
And can’t be disrespected.

Game thirty nine, the boys opine
Will garner muchos dollars
And they attest ‘twill interest
The Thai and J League scholars.
In Vietnam and Uncle Sam,
The dividends are massive,
And clubs who dare can grab a share
But not by staying passive.

But some don’t like this trans-world hike
And label it dementia.
The fans, they say, on modest pay
Cannot afford this venture.
They call it greed, this craven need
For worldwide domination,
And say this plan is anti-fan,
An insult to the nation.

How can John Doe afford to go
To places like Burundi?
And who can fly off to Dubai
And get back home for Monday?
The loyal fans are also-rans,
The way this scheme is crafted.
They built these teams, but now it seems,
They’ll end up getting shafted.

Oh how my heart doth ache and smart
At all this agitation!
And I must weep myself to sleep
At such great lamentation.
The die-hard fan can’t make Japan
Or Adelaide or Delhi.
The only way he’ll see them play
Is watching on the telly.

But wait a mo! Before I go
And join the revolution,
Deep in my mind, I sense a kind
Of vengeful retribution.
Those fans stayed schtum and acted dumb
When asked for help by others,
When the Premier League with deep intrigue
Cast off its poorer brothers.

What did they care for deep despair
In Mansfield, York and Wycombe?
When Luton Town were going down
They formed a line to kick ‘em.
They gave support to those who thought
That Mammon must be sated,
And thus I cringe to hear them whinge
‘Bout being thus negated.

It must be said, they made their bed
And hopped in with the Devil,
Seduced by greed that fed their need
On playing fields not level.
And now they claim their precious game
Is being destroyed by money!
Up in Carlisle, they wryly smile
But can’t see much that’s funny.

And spare a thought for those in sport
In far, exotic places,
Who’ll gladly queue to pay to view
Our old familiar faces.
For Scudamore knows well the score –
The product’s bound to pull ‘em.
Lord help the souls expecting goals
At Bolton versus Fulham.

As riches gleam, your Premier team
Becomes more fan-resistant.
In iv’ry towers, the football powers
Now spiral ever distant.
So if you’re sweet on the elite
And now feel very local,
Eschew the hype, revert to type
And follow teams more local.
Reclaim the game. Support your local team!

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