I'm not generally a huge fan of cross-promoting football writing on here, as I know what all five readers really want is another fish pie recipe. I'll make an exception for the last piece written for twofootedtackle though. The title's Why the Premier League has failed every one of the League's 92 clubs. The content is exactly that. To me, it's increasingly clear that the road the Premier League is currently going down is storing up a lot of problems, financially, not just for the 20 clubs in the top flight, but all the way down the league (and even into the non-league game as well).
The Premier League in itself isn't intrinsically bad in my book, but the circumstances it has ended up creating will (and I use will instead of could here) lead a large number of club down the road to financial ruin, while simultaneously killing off any hope England will ever have of winning a major tournament.
I'm a naturally pessimistic person, but I don't think the above is hyperbole.
And all the while, I - and many others I know - are getting increasingly disillusioned with the Premier League. A few people have asked me what my opinion has been on the Rooney saga over the last week and all I can muster is a 'meh'. Frankly, I couldn't really care less about where he goes or what he does. The finances behind Manchester United are much more interesting to me than a highly paid megastar throwing a strop for more money.
And all the time, the level of fandom seems to be getting more extreme (although I suppose that's what the ultimate definition of a fanatic is). Any level of debate that contains just the slightest smidgen of nuance is drowned out by the clamour to blame it on the ref, the manager or one player, and often looking at it through some of the most one-eyed tinted glasses.
Any level of perceived criticism, no matter how balanced the piece, is leaped upon as an example of bias against the club or evidence that said writer is a closet fan of a rival team.
In truth, I'm finding myself skimming over a lot of Premier League writing and highlights without always taking in a huge level of detail. Many Premier League focused blogs, which are the worst examples of the above, have been culled from my RSS reader. I'm not even that bothered about missing Match Of The Day these days.
Even though my team has never had, and probably never will, have a hope in hell of reaching the Premier League, I've always followed it with a fair level of devotion, taking in twists and turns and tuning into most games that I could. This season is the first season I've not quite had the will to take much other than a passing notice.
I'm not quite sure if there's any quick fix to pull in those like me (and I've spoken to a surprisingly large number) who are turning their back on England's top flight, and even if there was, I wouldn't trust the governing bodies to implement it properly.
I still love football. I still watch much more of the game than is probably healthy. But every time I watch the Premier League, my soul dies a little more.