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Scudamore Can't Let Go Of The "39th Game"
Reuters, October 24th, 2008 12:45PM

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The philosophy of English Premier League Chief Executive Richard Scudamore with regard to his universally scorned plan to play a round of EPL games in foreign cities around the world is similar to that of a small child hankering after an unfeasibly expensive toy. He seems to figure that if he bangs on about it for long enough, the world will give in just to shut him up.

"Globalization of sport is here, it's been here for a while and this is just the next manifestation of it," Scudamore reiterated at a global sport summit in London Friday. "We knew the reaction would be somewhat extreme and we knew it was going to be difficult, maybe not as quite as difficult, but clearly we have been looking at this for some time." Although the idea needed re-thinking, "in terms of playing meaningful games abroad, hopefully it will happen within my lifetime, hopefully within my soccer administration career."

Chelsea Chief Executive Peter Kenyon said clubs had a duty to support the league in trying to grow its global appeal, but the idea of the 39th game still had to be properly worked out because it "got out of the box without a proper rationale or way that it would work." But nonetheless, he added, "it would be remiss of the Premier League not to evaluate it and is part of Richard's job to make sure the Premier League moves forward and we will be supportive of that."

Although it does depend on what your idea of "moving forward" is in soccer administration terms. Getting richer, or acting for the good of the game? [Exits to the sound of howls of cynical laughter from soccer executives.]

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