Neil, Andy and Mike are joined by Neil Jones from the Liverpool Echo, Chair of LFC Boston Tim Treacy and Twisted Bloods Andi Thomas as they discuss the US Tour, Joe Allen, the Corporate beast that has become football and also that shower from down the M62.
Music this week from The Last Gambados and Swami Baracus
Direct link to CITYTALK: AMERICAN PIE podcast download
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I follow and support Liverpool Fc. Obviously that’s become more than just on match days and tends to consume my whole life (currently on the verge of getting sacked because even though i know the websites i visit in work are being monitored i can’t stop myself from accessing Twitter and TAW for info).
At the end of the day though, I don’t give a f*** who are partners are. If Chevolet Fc give the club money then fine. It has no impact on me whatsoever. On matchdays it’s the last thing on my mind.
The way i see it is it’s all part of the plan to get us back to the top. We all complain that Liverpool have lost ground over the past 20 years and a lot of that has been down to the owners. Now we have someone who recognises that and is trying to make us a global brand to go with being a top global side, which is what we want. Unfortunately, they go hand in hand nowadays.
I manage an under 10’s side and I need to find funds for kits & balls etc. I don’t like globalisation or banks but I’ve just applied to the Bank of America (MBNA) for funding and in fairness they’ve been great. They’re bringing up our case at their next foundation meeting, have offered us a signed LFC shirts to auction, arranged for a Chester coach to come and train us for a session and arranged free entry into the Chester games for the team. I’ve also had £150 from a ‘no win no fee’ company.
The point being – I don’t give a f*** where the cash comes from. We need it. No one helps us without prompting. Good luck to FSG with all these partners. It means nothing to me except the fruits of it which manifests itself in what i see on the pitch as players.
If you wanna be moralistic in football that’s fine but be prepared to play in the Evo-Stik league with AFC Utd and the likes or at best finish mid table in the Prem every year. I want success for LFC not so much at any cost but i’m certainly willing to put up with having partners that you never even hear of besides they odd advertisement at Anfield.
I’m American and wanted to comment on the US tour. Football is growing in leaps and bounds in the states, largely due to the Internet and tv access. When I was a kid in the 80’s nobody at my school could name a major football club. Now, everyday dozens of kids at my kid’s school wear kits from all over Europe.
Some 30 million kids in the US play soccer (i’ll use soccer to avoid confusion with Grid iron). Each one has parents and siblings that are learning the game, and potential fans (dads often become the biggest fans in the house). I live in the 130th (roughly) biggest city in the US, and we have 3 competitive soccer clubs with over 3000 kids playing, and this does not include the greater numbers that play at a more recreational level. So I believe the big numbers. That is a potential pool of fans that numbers close to 90 million people. If LFC could capture 1% of these that would translate into 900,000 fans. What does that mean financially? For the recent US tour, I bought my son the new kit with Suarez on the back for $100 (I’d already bought mine so will not count it as a direct result from the tour). We flew to Boston for the game then took a train to Baltimore for that game, $240 for the tickets just to the games. At the game in Boston we dropped another $60 on a scarf and a hat (I won’t include the $75 we spent on food and beer). That’s $400.
So if LFC could capture 1% of US fans, that’s 900,000 people. If half of those fans spent 1/4 of what we did that’s 450k multiplied by 100, or $45 million. Now, assume I’ve overestimated and cut that number by 1/3, that’s $30 million. Converted to pounds at today’s rates and that’s almost £20 million. So, if LFC successfully courts US fans with US tours then they could afford another Aquilani! Oh crap, never mind.
Got to agree with Paul. I’m a Brit living in US – went to the Liverpool – Spurs game in Baltimore as well. 42,000 attendance for a pre-season kick about – probably 35,000 of them Liverpool fans. At the end there was no (Liverpool)merchandise left to sell (despite how horrible that Warrior kit looks) There is huge potential to build a committed fan base in the US that will contribute to LFC finances.
There has been a lot of negative commentary on TAW about this pre-season tour mainly focused on the disruption to training etc. Not sure I agree with this. The team has been based up in Boston where climate is much more conducive to training (80°F high temp not the 100 we had in Baltimore). And given the lack of time to prepare the team having them out of home environment should be a benefit in getting the younger and newer players to gel and giving new management team better opportunity to observe/interact witbteam in both group and individual situations.
My only complaint – last time I saw Pool vs Spurs was Anfield in 1984 when Spurs won for first time in 73 years. In spite of loss it was a much better game than yesterdays but that’s preseason for you
Some very interesting points about the corporate deals; loved the ‘Luis & Patrice on Route 66’ comment.
Personally, it’s always been there. An awful lot of us in the UK can only remember a time when shirt sponsorship has been the norm, and therefore owning a Sharp or NEC product was avoided at all costs. But nowadays it’s much more complex than that, deals seem to change every other season – for example the Vodafone contract I took out for 24 months in early ’06 made me feel dirty to begin with, but soon became palatable. Just about.
Seriously though, how many LFC fans drive an Audi or use DHL? A fair few, I’ll bet. But not Chang, that stuff is just wrong.
As an aside, what would make sense would be if there were direct links to sponsors on the main LFC site with discounts/deals for LFC fans. I could do with a new matchday jacket from Jack Wolfskin, or a set of Maxxis tyres for my bike! It might be a nice idea to buy from a sponsor of the club, and therefore support LFC in the process, but we’re all a bit mercenary with our own money nowadays, right?