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Atlanta United v Portland Timbers - MLS Cup Championship Match

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Roker Ramble: Todd Boehly wants to deliver some MLS razzmatazz to the Premier League!

It’s not a move that’s gone down well with many, but Chelsea’s new owner thinks we can up our marketing game in this country. Meanwhile, Michael Sheen has been getting the Welsh all worked up...

Photo by Ira L. Black/Corbis via Getty Images

Boehly called “arrogant” over North/South Allstars match

He’s only been here two minutes, but new Chelsea owner Todd Boehly is already ruffling feathers.

You’ll probably have seen his idea about a Premier League Allstars match between the north and the south. Well, I say idea, more of a general musing in an interview to a publication across the pond.

Ultimately I hope the Premier League takes a little bit of a lesson from American sports and really starts to figure out, why don’t we do a tournament with the bottom four sports teams, why isn’t there an All-Star game?

People are talking about more money for the pyramid, in the MLB All-Star game this year we made 200 million dollars from a Monday and a Tuesday. So we’re thinking we could do a North versus South All-Star game for the Premier League, for whatever the pyramid needed quite easily.

I don’t care what anyone thinks: a North v South Allstars match would be absolutely superb. If not for the match itself but the absolute fume by football fans when they see their players aren’t considered as not worthy of a place in the squad (why is Brewnurrrhh not on the roster man?).

Chelsea FC v West Ham United - Premier League
Look at these new trades. Kick goal city, guys.
Photo by Harriet Lander - Chelsea FC/Chelsea FC via Getty Images

Sadly, I appear to be in somewhat of a minority. Especially where Liverpudlians who can’t keep saliva in their mouths are concerned.

Party pooper Jamie Carragher has raised the denial flag over Boehly’s plan for multiple PKs to be awarded in a match-up between EPL’s winningest superstars.

“I’ll be honest with you, when I look at that statement I think is incredibly arrogant to speak about a league that you don’t know” Carragher spat.

“To speak like that when you’ve been somewhere for six weeks and talk about ‘we’re going to bring what we doing in other American sports’, I just think of the American public would feel if an English Premier League football owner then went to the NFL and was saying ‘we do this in the Premier League.”

See I’m confused. If Boehly has been here for a while and suggested the exact same idea it would be okay? Or is it because he’s American and you don’t like it?

Also the American public would love it; imagine how a thatched roof would go down on one of their stadiums after a side is bought out by a British businessman.

Now I totally get it when plans to take the game away from the fans in this country are roundly denounced - but this is a chance to watch the greatest players in all the land showcase their stuff.

Either that, or most of them pull out so we’re paying £65 a pop to watch Donny van de Beek run about a bit.


Rob Page wants Michael Sheen to give the pre-match team talk

In case you didn’t see Michael Sheen’s rousing pep talk he would give to the Welsh team ahead of this year's World Cup, you can view it here.

It’s quite something, isn’t it? Well, it’s not gone unnoticed and Rob Page has quite rightly said he wants to get Sheen into the dressing room to give a speech far more motivating than most of us could deliver - though he’ll probably have to come up with a new one, so as to maintain impact.

I’ve already had messages from the players … they want to get him in straight away, absolutely. I was in a meeting in Cardiff and I was going back up north and my phone was going bananas so I knew something had kicked off. When I watched it, I was in awe of it, it was unbelievable. I’ve had some great reaction from the players and the staff. When you’ve got the passion to do that, we’ve got to use it to our benefit, absolutely.

FOX’s Prodigal Son - Season Two
Wrong ball, Michael
Photo by FOX via Getty Images

I’ve got to be honest, as an Englishman who’s going to deliver that kind of speech? A stuttering Hugh Grant? Ross Kemp? Nick Knowles? That bloke from the postcode lottery?

You could pick out any number of Welsh, Scots, or Irish people you know would be brilliant at this - Bill Paterson, James Cosmo, Rob Brydon, Adrian Dunbar, Brian Cox, Brendan Gleeson, Colin Farrell, Anthony Hopkins, Christian Bale. The list is extensive.

Actually hold on - there are some good examples... Sean Bean, Patrick Stewart and Michael Caine to name a few. Hell, I’d get Sacha Baron Cohen in to give Gareth’s boys a good old gee up. Just anyone but James Corden, please.

If that does happen - you heard it here first.


News In Brief

  • Lovely scenes in Exeter, as Jay Stansfield has become the first player to wear Exeter’s no.9 shirt since the death of his Dad Adam in 2010.
  • In slightly more bizarre news, 13-year old Christopher Atherton has become the youngest ever British player, coming on for Glenavon in their BetMclean Cup victory over Dollingstown. The lad must be good because he laid on the assist for the Blues’ final goal in their 6-0 rout.
  • A Preston fan has been banned for life from Deepdale for enquiring whether he would be banned for booing during a minutes’ silence for the Queen. He also said he would Nazi salute in her honour. Bit of a silly thing to say, that. But a life ban? You decide.
  • Barcelona have threatened legal action against Atletico Madrid because they believe an obligation to buy clause has been triggered in relation to Antoine Griezmann. Atleti have disputed this, saying it covers two years, and not one. In an act of supreme shithousery, the Colchoneros have restricted the Frenchman to 30 minutes per game to ensure he doesn’t reach the 50% threshold required.
Club Atletico de Madrid v Deportivo Alaves - La Liga Santander
A man used sparingly
Photo by Denis Doyle/Getty Images
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