The Premier League are still reportedly looking to play matches abroad, more than a decade after the controversial ’39th game’ was floated.
A money-spinning 39th game was first put forward back in 2008, where each Premier League club would have earned an extra £5 million to play an additional league fixture at stadiums around the world, as they looked to cash in on similar successes within the NFL and NBA.
The proposal was ultimately condemned by figures far and wide, including FIFA, UEFA, the FA and supporters groups, before it was ultimately shelved.
According to a report in The Athletic this morning though, clubs have recently discussed a ‘possible roadmap for meaningful matches abroad’ at some point in the future.
According to the report, the Premier League is looking to enhance its profile in the likes of the USA, China, India, Brazil and Indonesia, with an ‘enhanced pre-season tournament’ in America next summer having been discussed as an ‘initial step’.
However, they report that the ‘longer term’ goal is still to play ‘competitive matches on foreign soil’, and was discussed at the league’s AGM back in June.
While they say that it will take ‘several years’ for any such plan to come to fruition, the Premier League seem determined to extract as much cash out of their product from the global market, even in spite of the widespread condemnation of the so-called ‘big six’ in the fallout of the Super League debacle just 12 months ago.