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English Premier League

Footballers are not overpaid



With some of the global stars receiving wages of over £200,000 a week, many label footballers as ‘overpaid’. But in a world where money equals power with the majority of humanity adopting the capitalist view point, why is this label still so common?

Following the capitalist view, hard work should be rewarded. Musicians who have come from nothing to earn millions are respected. Alexis Sanchez has a poor sixty minutes for the Gunners and people question his worth. Bill Gates, the creator of Windows, can drop £5 and not bother to pick it up. His earnings are more than the outlay of time it takes to recollect his fallen fiver.

He is labelled as a ‘leader of innovation’ and has the respect of the world for his work and his commendable donations to charity. Footballers follow Gates’ actions, earning far less. Cristiano Ronaldo has been thanked by Save The Children for using his ‘global visibility’ when raising awareness about the devastating Nepal earthquake. In smaller circumstances, Damien Duff has recently signed a contract with Shamrock Rover agreeing to give all his wages to charity. Even with the generosity on show, the world of football chooses to ignore it and the ‘overpaid’ label remains.

Pictured here for Melbourne FC, Damien Duff will represent Shamrock Rovers for free with all of his wages going to charity.

Capitalist businesses act in a less charitable way, receiving negativity only from Human Rights Activist. A successful brand named Apple are worth $700bn yet workers producing the electrical goods receive less than 0.00001% of the earnings. No one seems to be bothered. Apple provide a good that satisfy a self-fulling need so why is it different for footballers.

Take one of the latest financial super powers, Manchester City. They earn large amounts of money from ticket sales, merchandise and sponsors and distribute it to the workers in a way that is much more fair than Apple. Sergio Aguero earns more than 0.0001% of City’s earnings but received in a different light to the pay of Apple’s workers.

Players like Aguero provide so much joy and satisfaction from memorable displays of their immense talent. The 2012/13 Premier League winning goal springs to mind when mentioning Aguero. The man is said to be ‘overpaid’ as his show of talent also benefits himself whereas an Apple workers craftsmanship benefits the paying customer more than the maker. It seems that when the personal benefit is less than someone else’s, there is a problem.

Another problem with the label is the vagueness. ‘Footballers’. Think about it. A nine year old from Liverpool, signed on to his local club, is technically a footballer. So are the many players plying their trade in the lower leagues managing another job while playing football. Top flight footballers are also ‘footballers’, obviously, and it’s these top pros that earn the label for every player across the globe. The talent and hard work, along with luck, of that individual is completely ignored. The financial value of the professional is the only factor taken into account. The term ‘footballers are overpaid’ lacks a specific angle therefore making it invalid.

The lack of career length also makes financial payments vital to players, many of which have missed out on valuable qualifications from the school system to pursue a career in football. The fact that Mike Calvin is slating Raheem Sterling is horrendous. A young lad that has grown up in a capitalist country working hard to achieve a professional career has the right to reject a contract. He doesn’t want to play for Liverpool, the connection between him and the club appears week as he is a Londoner, not a scouser.

Associates with football jump at the fact that Sterling wants more money. There is no concrete evidence that this is Sterling’s aim. He rejected a contract, never did he say he wants more money.

The young talent is acting in his best interest, like anyone else would in his circumstance. He realises that a football career can be short. To set himself up for a comfortable later life, he needs all he can get at his current age. In a way it’s greed. Looking deeper, it’s clever future planning from the man that seems to be heading for Anfield’s exit door.

To finish, the argument that public sector workers deserve the same wages as football is acceptable but the latter mentioned pay for some of the doctor, army and police occupants while also hiring their own staff in these areas of work. Capping footballer’s wages would lead to a rise in unemployment.

Irony: Raheem Sterling was bombarded with criticism by Liverpool fans against Stoke on the last day of the season. In reality, the tax he pays could help fund some of the fan’s wages.

Having paid £2.4bn in tax last season, the Premier League and its associates have done there part. The jobs created and infrastructure improved from the footballer’s tax payments could be considered key. People from the public sector should thank the ‘overpaid men that kick a ball around’ instead of criticise them.

The statement is wrong and so is the opinion of many football fans. This stereotype must be altered to allow the sport that is loved by millions to progress and become a better, more equally judge game.

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Journalism student at the University of Sheffield. Freelance for TheBootRoom.


Jack Wilshere’s injury shows why Arsenal shouldn’t renew his contract

The 26-year-old has been struck down by yet another injury.

Jake Jackman



Photo: Getty Images

Jack Wilshere will be pleased with the progress that he has made since returning to Arsenal from his loan spell at Bournemouth.

He was initially nothing more than a squad player that was out in the cold at international level too, but the midfielder worked hard to gain more game-time in North London.

Across all competitions, he has played more than 30 matches and his form earned him a call-up to the England squad.

It looked like he was getting a once-promising career back on track, but almost like clockwork, he has suffered an injury to set him back once again.

Gareth Southgate confirmed that he wouldn’t be travelling to the Netherlands for Friday’s match and the quotes were reported by Sky Sports.

“It is not a specific injury and over time they flare up and they need to settle down over a couple of days.

“We are hopeful it will settle down pretty quickly. It’s an ongoing problem and it’s not something new for him. He’s very disappointed not to be involved in the game.

“He’s trained well though but if you think about the journey he’s had in the last two years and his big injuries then he’s progressing really well.”

Although it is encouraging that it isn’t a serious injury, it is a reminder that Jack Wilshere remains a risk for both club and country.

(Photo by Catherine Ivill/Getty Images)

It is difficult to build a team around a player that is susceptible to miss matches and the quote from Southgate is a worry as he refers to an ongoing problem.

Arsenal have had a difficult campaign and they will be planning a rebuild over the next 48 months as they transition away from the Arsene Wenger era.

They will have to make tough decisions on many players at the club and Wilshere’s future will be brought into focus over the next few weeks as his contract expires at the end of the season.

There have been numerous reports regarding contract talks between the two parties and there is hesitancy on both sides.

This latest injury suffered by Wilshere and the comments from Southgate referring to an ongoing problem show why it is Arsenal who need to end this association.

Wilshere can’t be relied on to stay fit and to feature prominently in a busy schedule. Arsenal will have ambitions of challenging at the very top of the game and will likely be involved in European competition every season. They need to have a squad of players that are reliable and the 26-year-old isn’t that.

Aside from that, Wilshere represents what Arsenal have become over the last decade. He is a player that had a lot of potential, but he has failed to fulfil it and been very inconsistent at the highest level. Of course, he isn’t to blame for the club’s problems, but he is also unlikely to offer the solutions.

This season has been a nice farewell campaign for him. It would have been sad if his Gunners’ career had ended after being shipped out on loan to Bournemouth.

He has returned to earn some of his credibility back, but the club need to move on and progress if they are to get back to the top of the English game.

A lot of contentious decisions will need to be made and the first should be the release of Jack Wilshere this summer.

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Manchester United

Why Jose Mourinho’s treatment of Luke Shaw has crossed the line

The Portuguese manager has been highly critical of Luke Shaw this season.

Rob Meech



Luke Shaw
Photo: Getty Images

The fractious relationship between Jose Mourinho and Luke Shaw plumbed new depths when the left-back was substituted at half-time in Manchester United’s FA Cup victory over Brighton & Hove Albion. The 22-year-old had been handed a rare opportunity to impress at Old Trafford but lasted only 45 minutes.

Speaking about Shaw in his post-match interview, Mourinho said: “Luke, in the first half, every time they came in his corridor, the cross came in and a dangerous situation was coming. I was not happy with his performance.”

The differences between the pair now appear to be irreconcilable. Shaw, who was signed by Louis van Gaal in the summer of 2014, has been used sparingly by Mourinho. The former Southampton starlet has made just 18 Premier League appearances under the Portuguese in a career that has been blighted by injuries.

Being substituted at half-time is almost as embarrassing as it gets for a player and Shaw’s mood will not have improved after being publicly criticised by his manager. It’s certainly not the first time Mourinho has chosen to talk candidly to the media about his concerns with the 22-year-old.

(Photo by Michael Regan/Getty Images)

Some players require an arm around the shoulder to perform at their peak, while for others it takes a kick up the backside. Mourinho, opting for the latter, does nothing without reason and has clearly tried to spark a reaction from Shaw, without success.

From being one of English football’s brightest prospects after making his World Cup debut aged just 18, Shaw, who has seven England caps to his name, is in danger of not fulfilling the potential that convinced United to spend what was then a world-record fee for a teenager.

Mourinho’s tactic of singling out individuals who have not met his standards is in stark contrast to Sir Alex Ferguson, who never blamed his players in public. It has divided opinion among pundits, with Southampton legend Matt Le Tissier claiming the United manager is ‘destroying’ Shaw.

Mourinho is an expert at using smokescreens to distract from his side’s unconvincing performances. And this latest controversy has moved the narrative on from United’s shock Champions League exit at the hands of Sevilla.

(Photo by Lindsey Parnaby/Getty Images)

Tough love is one thing, but the sustained, public attack on Shaw is unacceptable. If Mourinho genuinely believes he is not good enough to represent United, then fair enough. But to continually vilify the youngster’s performances is a step too far and one that could irreparably damage Shaw’s confidence.

This is not to say that Shaw is a completely innocent bystander. Mourinho’s predecessor, Louis van Gaal, also questioned his desire and general conditioning when he joined United four years ago. Indeed, the Dutchman signed Shaw up to a tailored exercise regime in an effort to improve his fitness.

But while van Gaal’s treatment had the desired effect, Mourinho’s has done the opposite. Being publicly humiliated on a routine basis does neither party any favours.

In all likelihood, Shaw’s disappointing United career will come to an end this summer. A fresh start away from the toxicity under Mourinho is exactly what he needs.

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English Premier League

Keanan Bennetts has perfect opportunity to impress Mauricio Pochettino this week

The left-sided star has a chance to impress in first-team training during the international break.



Photo: Getty Images

With the international week in full flow, plenty of teams in the Premier League have seen their squads diminished by call-ups to national teams.

Tottenham Hotspur are one such side. Nonetheless, with most of the first-team squad away with their respective nations, work continues at Hotspur Way.

In order for Spurs to have a full complement in training, plenty of young talent needs to be pulled in to the ranks.

Mauricio Pochettino will, therefore,e get a chance to see some of his young players training with regular first-team players such as Fernando Llorente, Erik Lamela and Lucas Moura.

(Photo by Catherine Ivill/Getty Images)

One player who will be training with the first-team this week is talented wide-man Keanan Bennetts, according to London Live.

The 19-year-old left-winger has been catching the eye for the club’s youth team in recent weeks, making the news after scoring a fantastic goal for the under-19s against Monaco in the UEFA Youth League last month.

Bennetts has also been attracting interest for his positional dexterity. The wide-man has played at left-back in recent times and it could be that is his future best position.

This week he will be up against some excellent players such as Lamela and Moura, who did not receive selection to the Argentina and Brazil national teams, respectively.

If he can prove himself with this calibre of player, Pochettino will have to take notice.

(Photo by Catherine Ivill/Getty Images)

It is coming to a point in his Tottenham career when Bennetts has to make such an impact. The teenager is out of contract at Spurs in the summer and needs to ensure he is kept on for at least one more season.

Tottenham fans who follow the youth teams are certain he is deserving of such a chance. If he can show Pochettino what he is capable of this week, then a new deal will surely be in the pipeline for the talented wide-man.

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