We don’t have much need to cover James Corden’s Late Late Show here, which is probably for the best.
Last night, though, Corden took six minutes out of his show to focus on the announcement and controversy surrounding the push by top European clubs to form their own breakaway league. Corden’s work here is tremendous, noting that many people in his usual audience probably don’t care about this story but that he does and so he’s going to talk about it.
Corden’s passion on the subject shone through, too, and he managed to break down not only the potential ramifications of the Super League, but the economic environment of European soccer that led to this movement in the first place.
James reacts to the European Super League news:
"It's the end of the sport we love. It truly is." pic.twitter.com/IOZW8zMjRD
— The Late Late Show with James Corden (@latelateshow) April 20, 2021
Corden mentioning Leicester City’s league title from 2015-16 is a nice touch, because that was the kind of pyramid-upending moment that foreshadowed this exact move. That Corden also notes Leicester has the same number of Premier League titles as Liverpool and one more than Tottenham is great as well.
Some of the highlights:
“The truth is, this whole thing, making this move, these teams, these owners are killing, they will kill hundreds of other football teams that compete with them and have competed with them many times over the years, disregarding the fan bases of those teams and disregarding the fan bases of their own teams who are devastated too.”
“I’m heartbroken by it, genuinely heartbroken by it. I’m heartbroken because the owners of these teams have displayed the worst kind of greed I’ve ever seen in sport.”
“It’s hard to express how much these communities rely on football, not just financially, which is considerable, but football is like a focal point of a town’s hopes and dreams. That’s what it is, you know?
“And these dreams, they’ve just been shattered not just in Britain, all across Europe. And the reason these dreams have been shattered and discarded is so that a group of billionaires can buy themselves a bigger boat, or a second boat.”
“Football is a working-class game where anyone can beat anyone on their day, and it’s that that makes it incredible, it’s that that’s made it the global force it is today.”
“Don’t ever forget that it was them, those owners. They took something so pure and so beautiful and they beat the love and the joy out of it and they did it for money. They just did it for money. And it’s disgusting.”
Corden rightly notes that things had been trending this way for some time, and he also says he thinks the Super League is inevitable. It’s really more of a lament, a preemptive mourning of what’s about to come to pass unless the entire thing somehow falls apart (not impossible) and does so in a way that scares owners from attempting another version in the near future (not likely.)
Credit where it’s due: casual American sports fans might not get a better summary of what’s happening, why it’s happening, and why it’s so upsetting for fans of European soccer than that segment, which is in part why the Twitter video alone has amassed nearly 3 million views already.