Premier League shareholders met in London last week, with the long-proposed idea of holding competitive overseas matches proving a central area of discussion. Building on the plan to ‘take Premier League matches to the world’ first mentioned in June’s AGM, the proposition of a ‘roadmap for meaningful matches abroad’ was brought up in last week’s meeting. That’s according to The Athletic’s David Ornstein.
Premier League Shareholders Discuss Possibility of Overseas Matches
Global appeal is a crucial aspect in the development of domestic leagues in modern football. Breaking into foreign markets provides greater interest and coverage, which facilitates financial growth, which in turn increases the league’s capability of furthering its draw to new audiences and international superstars.
The Premier League is already one of – if not the – biggest league in world football, with a whole host of stars featuring week in week out. However, during last week’s conference, shareholders identified possible regions in which it could be bigger.
The United States, China, India, Brazil and Indonesia were all mentioned as potential markets in which a new and greater fanbase could be found.
Premier League Plans
With haste, Shareholders also got into steps that could be taken to fulfil the league’s potential in such areas.
A new and enhanced pre-season tournament in the US, which would presumably predominantly feature Premier League clubs, was discussed as an initial step that could be taken as a pre-cursor to the 2022/23 campaign.
However, it was the league’s long-term goal that particularly caught the attention. Last week, Premier League shareholders further discussed moving some competitive matches overseas. While the idea has seemed an inevitability for some time, Ornstein notes that it would take ‘several years’ for any Premier League match on foreign soil to take place.
This comes after a gargantuan few months for football, in which the lust for financial gain was highlighted as clearly as ever by the proposal of the European Super League by the bosses of some of the continent’s giants.
The Premier League’s proposed move would undoubtedly grow its international audience, generate much more interest in the targeted regions and help the league develop even further financially. However, it’s hard to not see it as another step in taking football away from its roots – the fans.
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