Greed is not Good

I suppose that the only surprising thing about the Daily Telegraph’s series of front page articles this week on corruption in football is that anyone should find it in the least bit surprising. As I have said before in these posts, football long ago ceased to be “the beautiful game” and these days often looks like little more than a money laundering operation.

The Telegraph reports have already cost Sam Allardyce his job as England Manager and there may well be further casualties to follow in the days to come. Given that these journalistic stings have been quite common in recent years, you would have thought that people in the public eye would be a bit wary of Greeks bearing gifts, but obviously not.

Last year back the Telegraph carried out a similar sting on politicians, exposing the breath-taking arrogance and sheer greed of Jack Straw and Sir Malcolm Rifkind. And of course the Telegraph was also responsible for uncovering the Parliamentary expenses scandal in 2009. Whatever you think of the Daily Telegraph, it does deserve credit for some good old fashioned investigative journalism.

Understandably, many people now hold politicians in contempt, feeling that they are self serving and out of touch with reality. I feel that football may now be going down the same road.

Even average Premiership players are now paid around £100k per week. It would take a nurse four or five years to earn that much. With players at the bigger clubs pulling in over £200k a week, it’s hard not to argue that football has lost touch with reality.

I used to be a big football fan. I would attend a match most Saturdays and subscribed to Sky Sports so that I could watch live games in my living room. Not any more. The culture of greed and the complete disregard which most clubs have for their fans has left me disillusioned with the sport.

In Oliver Stone’s classic film Wall Street Gordon Gekko famously declared that Greed is Good. Football managers, players and agents, like politicians, need to learn that it isn’t.




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