There is an interesting fact floating around at the moment about the Championship. 18 out of the 24 teams currently in the Championship have at one time or another played in the Premier League. Now that’s a competitive league if ever there was one.
Now there is also another interesting debate in the football world. Some fans will claim that the Championship and lower leagues are better to watch than the Premier League. To be fair I can see the point.
Recently Man City played Qpr at the Etihad stadium and for the most part it was one of the worst games of football I’ve ever bothered to watch. Even the crowd were so quiet I started to wonder if they thought the players were still warming up and at any point they would put the ball in the centre circle and actually start the game.
Now on the same day at the same time Leicester City were playing host to Blackpool, and this was by far a very different game. In the ten minutes I did watch, the game produced more entertaining football than an entire game between two “better” sides. So what’s the difference? Why such a contrast between two leagues?
The first difference between the leagues are the players involved. On any given day the players do give 100%. Now I’m not doubting the commitment of any of the players in the premier league. However take one look at Balotelli and looks like a fella that would throw the Champions League trophy into a corner and let it collect dust because he couldn’t be bothered with it like a child with a new toy who gets fed up and moves onto something else. Any player who just wants to play is, in my eyes, already giving 100%. Even go lower and lower and go to the Sunday league teams and see players who just want to play.
The quality of the players, however, do have to live up to those who play in the premier league. To compare the two just watch any lower league game and instantly turn over to a premier league game and its clear to anyone the passing and movement off the ball is sharper and moves at a quicker pace than that of any championship side.
The second difference is what’s on offer. 18 clubs have already had a taste of the delicious pie that is the Premier League. Each player that plays in those clubs weather he has played in the top flight or not have now got an opportunity to play there again. And its that opportunity which creates a drive and determination in players to get there. Those clubs have in fact got two chances to play in the big time. Either by winning or coming second and the playoff’s. So its not all over even if they are close to the playoff’s they can make a push for these places. In the end all of these factors can and do make for an exciting league and the prospect of good hard honest decent games of football
With all these clubs of fairly equal ability, size and ambition, playing for so much can create a level of unpredictability. With two evenly matched teams regularly going into games together it can be hard to pick a winner at times. And that makes it interesting to watch even as a neutral.