The rich get richer in European football

Critics of the Premier League get a boost when clubs from the English top flight fail to progress.  With the success of Manchester United yesteday evening, two of the eight clubs in the quarter finals are English.  David Conn must have been choking over his cornflakes.

Critics of the Premier League get a boost when clubs from the English top flight fail to progress.  With the success of Manchester United yesteday evening, two of the eight clubs in the quarter finals are English.  David Conn must have been choking over his cornflakes.

Spain has done better with Barcelona and Real Madrid joined by the surprise package of Atl├ętico Madrid, although they are second in La Liga, three points behind Real.   Germany have two teams, while France is represented by Paris Saint-Germain who have lavished quarter of a billion pounds on players in the last two years.   Italian teams are conspicuous by their absence, emphasising the relative decline of Serie A.

In many respects, this is one of the strongest group of teams ever represented at this stage of the Champions League.   However, this reflects an increasing concentration of wealth and hence the best players in a few clubs.   Bayern Munich epitomise the ‘rich get richer’ aspect of the modern game.