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Serie A heavyweights head-to-head

50-50 Challenge 2 days ago
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By ESPN Staff
May 8, 2008

Scudamore lifts lid on Premier League fears

Premier League chief executive Richard Scudamore has revealed fears other countries could try to push through rules to limit the success of the English top flight.

Scudamore believes the rest of Europe may be plotting to weaken the country that has produced the finalists for this year's Champions League, restricting them with quotas.

'A worry is European colleagues in other leagues getting jealous or envious,' he said. 'I'm sure the legislators and regulators in Europe would like to see us levelled down or dumbed down.

'We would never say to the French that we like their wine but can't make it as good. Would you mind making yours worse so ours can compete? It's the same the other way around.

'We fight very hard in Europe to make sure legislators do not say 'they are too successful, what can we do to bring them down?'

'That's no recipe for progress. That is the thing I worry about more than anything else.'

Scudamore also rejected criticism of the Premier League being boring.

Newcastle boss Kevin Keegan suggested earlier in the week the top flight could become dull with only four teams contesting the title, but Scudamore believes his comments had to be put in the context of Chelsea having just recorded victory at St James' Park.

'I don't think anyone in their right mind seriously thinks it is boring,' said the chief executive.

'Kevin had just come off the pitch and lost 2-0, probably thinking about `how (do) I get to that level over the summer'. It was just after the heat of the battle.

'The reality is that there is no-one who is interested in football who thinks the Premier League is boring. I don't believe it for one minute.

'Why is it the most watched? The numbers tell you it is the most exciting league in the world.'

Despite a consistent top four in recent seasons, Scudamore is confident a team can break into the Champions League places.

'I watch all these phases come and go,' Scudamore said. 'We've had two years of the same teams in the top four and that is the product of the Champions League, it is not the Premier League's fault.

'It is possible for others to break in and it will happen. If I sit here for another five years, it won't be that the same four teams finish in the top four.'