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Super League clubs’ extortionate spending exemplifies pathetic punishment for their actions – Andy Dunn

That punishment for trying to shaft the rest of the Premier League really sorted out one or two clubs.

Those Super League shysters have, well and truly, been taught a lesson.

The £3.7million-per-club fine was always going to hit them hard. It looks like Manchester City will only spend around £200million-plus if they can get Harry Kane to follow Jack Grealish and Chelsea might restrict themselves to a paltry £110milllion outlay on Romelu Lukaku.

Meanwhile, when the Raphael Varane move is finally rubber-stamped, Manchester United will probably end their buying at a rough £115million.

Mind you, the spending amongst the big clubs that wanted to form a European Super League while still playing in the Premier League might not stop there.

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Manchester City have splashed out £100m to sign Jack Grealish


Manchester City FC via Getty Ima)

It turns out the dire financial impact of Covid-19 was just a rumour to them.

If City do manage to get Kane over the line, it really is financial muscle-flexing of the highest order.

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Yes, they might well bring in a fair chunk of cash by selling players but there is no guarantee the likes of Bernardo Silva and others will agree to leave.

With Raheem Sterling having only two years of his contract left, City might be prepared to sell the England man.

But he does not have to go. Even if City cannot raise serious money from sales, they will still buy, such is their financial strength.

City and Chelsea might have been the first to realise the error of their ways when it came to the breakaway plot earlier this year but they seem pretty intent on creating a Super League within the Premier League.

If Lukaku does return to Stamford Bridge and Kane joins Grealish at the Etihad, then Chelsea and City will probably play out a Premier League title duel to follow their Champions League final tussle.

But United are considerably stronger though the addition of Jadon Sancho and Varane while the return of Virgil van Dijk will, to dig out an old cliché, feel like a new, big-name signing for Liverpool.

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It should be a compelling title race between these four clubs and they will certainly provide some wonderful football to watch, that is for sure.

But no-one else will get a look-in.

When the Premier League and the Football Association were considering what sanctions to impose on the six clubs who had agreed to form the Super League, one can only assume that the most meaningful punishment was one that would stand no chance of being legally enforceable.

Romelu Lukaku looks set for Chelsea in another big-money deal

Because if there was one sanction that might have had some sort of meaningful impact, it would have been a transfer embargo.

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Let’s face it, the combined fine of £22million for the six clubs was pathetic.

The rest of the Premier League probably knows its place and wants and needs to keep the cash from the Big Six swilling around.

Fair enough.

And the rest of the Premier League wants the big clubs to sign the world’s best players because it puts more value on the so-called ‘product’.

But those clubs who tried to shaft the rest of the Premier League have just been allowed to go merrily on their way.

It is as if their shameful plot never really happened.

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And that is what sticks in the craw.


For an event that has provided so much thrilling sport down the years, the current British and Irish Lions tour is something of an abomination.

Has anyone told the Springboks and the Lions that a pandemic has spread misery across the world?

We all need cheering up, spirits need lifting.

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The British & Irish Lions Test against South Africa has been a big disappointment

The Olympic Games are doing just that, spreading a smile each and every day.

Meanwhile, in the premier sporting event taking place in South Africa, there has been little other than sniping, sourness and soulless rugby.

Whoever unimaginatively bludgeons their way to a clinching victory, this has been a series that will be soon forgotten.


Fair play to boxer Ben Whittaker for his heartfelt apology after a lousy response to defeat in the light-heavyweight final in Tokyo on Wednesday.

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He stuffed the silver medal in his pocket, along with his hands, while winner Arlen Lopez was receiving his gold.

The whole debate about whether or not you should be happy with a runners-up finish is a pretty spurious one.

If you fully expected gold, for example, then you are entitled to be deflated.

But whatever the scale or otherwise of your disappointment, you are not entitled to be ill-mannered and disrespectful.

Good on Whittaker for realising that.

Now he has learnt how to lose, he is a talented young man who will go far.

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As the German team absolutely trounced Team GB in the final of the women’s pursuit, I wondered if the commentator on German television echoed the famous line uttered by Barry Davies during the men’s hockey final at the 1988 Seoul Olympics and said something along the lines of: “Wo waren die Briten, aber ehrlich gesagt, wen interessiert das?”*

All those years ago, as Great Britain beat Germany, Davies set the tone for the BBC’s modern-day approach to the Games.

After her brilliant silver medal run in the 800 metres, the lauding of Keely Hodgkinson was fully understandable but went on so long, Michael Johnson eventually felt compelled to point out there was another 19-year-old in the race, Athing Mu, who finished up the road.

Athing Mu deserved more credit for winning gold
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Anadolu Agency via Getty Images)

Of course, the BBC is going to focus on British athletes. The clue is in its name.

And the same bias will probably be found in broadcasters from most countries, including Germany.

But as a public service, the BBC cannot let itself stray into the realms of undiluted tub-thumping, flag-waving, blinkered nationalism.

It is not there yet but it is on a dangerous path.

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*”Where were the British but, frankly, who cares?”


There have been several sporting staging posts on the route out of the pandemic, occasions when normality felt a step closer.

A quarter-full Wembley for an FA Cup final, a reduced crowd lining the fairways at Royal St George’s, a full Centre Court for another Novak Djokovic triumph.

But when did normality OFFICIALLY return? When a big crowd rocked up for the first day of the summer’s showpiece Test match series and watched an England batting collapse. That’s when.

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