We interrupt our normal Vulture programming to give you a sports report from across the pond, where a proposed European Super League is threatening to upend soccer’s various leagues and cultures as we know it. (The concise version is that 12 prominent teams from the United Kingdom, Spain, and Italy are defecting from the Champions League to form their very own private club of sorts. We promise, this is a massive shock for people who call soccer “football.”) James Corden, a lifetime fan of watching the pitch, spent part of Monday’s The Late Late Show chastising the “disgusting” greed from owners who made the ESL possible, and how they “hid behind a devastating pandemic” as a reason to organize such a league.
“The truth is, this whole thing, making this move, these teams, these owners are killing, they will kill hundreds of other football teams that compete with them and have competed with them many times over the years, disregarding the fan bases of those teams and disregarding the fan bases of their own teams who are devastated too,” an irate Corden explained. “It’s hard to express how much these communities rely on football, not just financially, which is considerable, but football is like a focal point of a town’s hopes and dreams. That’s what it is, you know? And these dreams, they’ve just been shattered. Not just in Britain, but all across Europe. And the reason these dreams have been shattered and discarded is so that a group of billionaires can buy themselves a bigger boat, or a second boat. Football is a working-class game where anyone can beat anyone on their day. And it’s that that makes it incredible and what made it the global force that it is today.”
Corden noted how these club owners didn’t consult players, managers, or fans before announcing the ESL, many of whom have already expressed backlash over the proposed league. It’s also estimated that the league could generate over a billion dollars in revenue for one season — but at least the money won’t be coming from Amazon, which said today in a statement, “we have not been involved in any discussion.” Corden concluded: “They took something so pure and so beautiful and they beat the love and the joy out of it, and they did it for money. They just did it for money.”