17 October 2011

The Manchester City Dilemma - What Happens When the Novelty of Hating the New Rich Rubs Off?

Please welcome once more Elliott from Futfanatico. You only hate him because you're jealous.

Part of you has to love the verve of our billionaire plutocrat overlords. Otherwise, your actions would make very little sense according to conventional logic. Weekly, you pump gas into your fine horseless carriage and thereby donate to City's next blockbuster signing, right? Gas prices go up, but you sleep easy knowing that Sergio Agüero's paycheck won't bounce this week. Granted, these funds do eventually trickle down to important benevolent causes, like the Adebayor Charity for the Advancement of Live Music and the Roque Santa Cruz Designer Low-Cut Gray Shirt Foundation. None of this would be possible without your regular petroleum patronage. Right? RIGHT?

Well, I am not you. I detested Chelsea when Abramovich arrived with his wheelbarrow of shady roubles. However, Chelsea is more a billionaire's plaything, an overpriced toy with defective penalty-kick-taking appendages. I don't detest City, though: I hate them. I hate the nascent Sheik empire at Eastlands, but I hate them for the right reasons. You, however, hate them for the wrong reasons. And that is why my hate will burn eternal, while surrounding flames eventually extinguish.

Your basic and fleeting reasons for hating them? Jealousy. Envy. These are the most common reasons to detest City. Did you realize you were such a boring conformist? Me neither. These reasons, sadly, are also the worst. Allow me to regurgitate some oft-vomited sports writing ink. Did City just sign one of your key players? Shocker! Anger! Do you wish your team had a transfer kitty half the size of City? Envy alert! Everybody, including you, secretly (or openly) wants the new Financial Fair Play rules to put an end to "Financial Doping". I just don't want to hear any more of your middle-class moping. The plutocrat billionaires with lobbyists and CEO chums will find an end-around, so don't hold your breath. Instead, take a step back and genuflect. Look at both thyself and thy plutocrat.

Why is the Sheik pumping so much cash into City? Is it to win titles? Is it to find a high revenue & low profit venture to wash some sticky cash? These are ancillary motives. The real reason the Sheik is cashing in his chips on the Blues is you. Yes, you read that correctly. You. Your fine self. And you are playing right into his diabolical hands.

I note at this point that OPEC is so 1970s. Basically, the Russian Arctic is the new oil-rich desert. Ergo, those OPEC folks have lost their monopoly. They don't even have the clout anymore to control prices and squeeze out small-time American businesses. Pathetic. Yet, at the same time as this decrescendo, businesses from the Gulf bought a FIFA World Cup, Málaga, Manchester City, and the front of Barcelona's jersey. Coincidence? Casualidad? Nein.

In sum, the Sheik wants your love. The Gulf is diversifying and attempting some serious PR to try and steer away from an unsustainable business model. And you? You? You were probably too busy singing offensive songs about Emmanuel Adebayor to notice. Not only can you not see the woods for the trees: you see the leaf and scream to high heaven. Yet your jealous hatred sends mixed signals. Hatred demands attention. Hatred requires an emotional connection that the Sheik mistakenly interprets as love. You are gasoline to his flame. The Sheik is a screaming teenager with a new tattoo, and you salivate at the expensive butterfly tramp stamp. Disdain for the new rich is also a passing emotion. Eventually, the new rich lose the "new" tag. And then what?

My hatred burns an eternal, focused blue because I hate the Sheik for a permanent character flaw. I hate the Sheik because he seeks your love. He is needy. He is clingy. He paid a lot of money for Adebayor just because he wanted you to look at him paying a lot of money to buy Adebayor. And you looked. And you raged, your mouth agape. The more the Sheik seeks your petty eyeballs, the more I hate him. And when he doesn't unabashedly seek them, I construct a mental image of him secretly plotting his next grand "look at me right now" move. You must get over your own pettiness. Get over the transfers, the designer watches. Learn to hate in the purest form, or risk finding yourself watching City on Saturday mornings and applauding that dashing duo of Agüero and Silva. And then crying uncontrollably in a locked bathroom.

So the next time a petro-based Gulf business buys the club down the street, don't complain about new signings. Simply shake your head in disgust and mutter "Pathetic." If you do anything else, you play into their plans...

Elliott blogs about soccer at Futfanatico.com. His soccer eBook, An Illustrated Guide to Soccer & Spanish, is available for only $5.99 on the Amazon Kindle. Check out a free preview here.


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