Wednesday, October 8, 2008

£90 billion? $700 billion? Just enjoy the ride

Continuing "Kubrick Movie Stills Week" here at Match Pricks, I think the image of Slim Pickens riding a comical nuclear bomb straight into oblivion while laughing the whole way down is the mood that football fans should adopt while the game's overlords warn of massive consequences from the global financial crisis.

I mean, seriously, at this point, what is there anything the common man can do about it? If the die is well and truly cast for the demise of big-time football, the kind that brings a majority of the world's most-talented players to England to be broadcast around the world by Sky's and Setanta's cameras, well shit man, just soak up what's left of the good times.

Yes, this is the kind of foolish and shortsighted advice that I have applied myself to continue a run of fantastically delirious and wild weekends with little thought to what might actually happen should I live to 55 or beyond. I'll concede that point to you. But you have no stake in my retirement years. Besides, retirement is sooooo 20th century. We're all working now until the heart fails, the kidneys stop working their magic and the brain slowly winds down into zero activity and we keel over at our desks. No point in expressing your interest in "travel" during your golden years. Seeing the Coliseum is just going to have to remain one of the unchecked boxes on that bucket list, kiddo.

No, now is not the time to fear for the future of club football at the highest levels. The money men are stuck. The fans are left, though, with the team they supported back when players did backflips for £250 a week. Look at Hicks and Gillet – and sometimes, unfortunately, you have to. Those rotting, slowly moving vessels of scum and lies are panicked into total silence. There is no future for them in this game, and it has never been more clear to them. They'll be gone soon. But Liverpool Football Club is going nowhere, nor are its supporters.

The 2014 Reds might feature Fat Albert instead of Albert Riera. So what? With football, why worry about it? Look after yourself, don't buy that new Mascherano European 3rd kit if you can't afford it, and make sure you can still put food and drink in front of you every day. Let the pigs stress about how they'll pay next week's wage bill. The structure of the game might change, but the leagues are not about to evaporate, no matter what dire warnings David Conn issues from the Guardian Serious Writers Desk tomorrow or the next day.

(Sidebar: Conn is an excellent writer and exceedingly knowledgeable about what he covers. But the tone of fear and pending doom that permeates much of his work only strikes a worrying tone if you consider football unwatchable outside of its current big money phase. A reduced, vastly different game would not necessarily mean a less-enjoyable product.)

Meanwhile, once this interminable international break ends, we can all get back into the business of watching these rich bastards run around and drive us mad – or carry us into even higher levels of delirium. It's only two hours of your time and whatever you care to spend on tickets or drinks during that time. The game can only break your hearts. For Hicks and Gillet and their ilk, it can break their bank.

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