EPL's new wealth doesn't change history, says Dortmund boss

What's the best league in the world? Few discussions get fans and experts going quite like the topic of comparing Europe's top leagues.

In England, the feeling still is that the Premier League is the best league in the world. But based on what criteria? The EPL's international TV revenues outdistance those from other leagues by a wide margin so it's the best-sold league, hands down. Beyond that?

In the United States, the EPL easily outdraws other European leagues in terms of viewers, but it again benefits from the remarkable promotional and production work of the folks at NBC Sports. (Univision is quick to point out its ratings for Liga MX games easily beat out those for the EPL.)

The best criteria most will use in comparing the top leagues concern best clubs and the best players. Only one English team -- Chelsea in 2013 -- has made the semifinals of the UEFA Champions League in the last three years. EPL players were shut out of the 2015 FIFPro Best XI and just 10 players ranked among the 44 players who comprised the four reserve teams.

Still, there is that perception of EPL superiority, largely driven by money. Hans-Joachim Watzke, the Borussia Dortmund chief executive, believes the new $7 billion TV deals the EPL has signed don't make it better than the Bundesliga, telling  Kölnischen Rundschau Germany “is the world champion, while the English will be able to celebrate a great milestone in the summer: 50 years without a title."

Watzke says Bundesliga clubs have nothing to fear as long as they stick to what they do well.

“There is no need for the Bundesliga to be shy," he said. "From a soccer perspective, it’s just as good as the Premier League. We have superb stadiums filled with passionate fans, the average attendance is much higher, we play great soccer and we have first-class academies."

Watzke doesn't imagine the new-found wealth will change perceptions of the EPL among BVB players.

“I can’t imagine," he said, "that good players from Borussia Dortmund will move to Norwich City or Crystal Palace."
3 comments about "EPL's new wealth doesn't change history, says Dortmund boss".
  1. Brian Kraft, January 23, 2016 at 11:41 a.m.

    I am always hearing (probably from NBC) that, top to bottom, the EPL is stronger. Seeing Leicester up and Chelsea down might confirm that, and all the games are tight. I have little interest in tuning in La Liga and seeing Barcelona win 6-0. That league manages to both have the best teams and be a joke. SA should offer some statistical analyses rather than telling us what Bundesliga officials think.

  2. Joey Tremone replied, January 23, 2016 at 4:12 p.m.

    Yes, and saying that Dortmund (usually top two in Germany) is better than Norwich or Palace, who will consider non-relegation a job done, really lets the cat out of the bag once you think about it.

  3. Carlos Figueroa replied, January 25, 2016 at 9:03 a.m.

    Yes, the difference between top La Liga teams to bottom teams is greater than in the EPL, but that's a product of Barca, Real, and Athletico all being European title contenders, and not a sign of weak bottom teams. Until there's a bottom of the table European tournament, there will be no clear answer. However, when it comes to mid-table, La Liga is world class. After all, La Liga placed SIX teams into the champions league group stage.

Next story loading loading..

Discover Our Publications