The Cost Of Living

Another weekend, another outburst from the owner of a football club. This time it was David Sullivan, who criticised his supporters for their absence from St Andrews of late, and wondered aloud whether Birmingham City deserved to be a Premiership football club at all. Now, Sullivan has been involved at Birmingham for a long time, but statements like this make me wonder whether he’s learnt anything at all from his time on charge there. First, the case for the defence (I try to be even-handed where possible). Getting back into the Premiership was always going to be an expensive business for Birmingham City. They were not expected to go down last season, and were left with a lot of players who would be playing Championship football on Premiership contracts. The Premiership’s “parachute payments” only last a couple of years, and they certainly don’t come anywhere near the cost of relegation. Sullivan only has to look at Ipswich, Bradford, Leicester, Nottingham Forest or Coventry to see cautionary tales for what can go wrong if you don’t go straight back up. His arse will be on the line, financially and in view of his popularity, if they don’t go back up. Expectations at Birmingham, as a result of their performance over the last four or five years or so, are sky-high. However… God. What a stupid thing to say. Firstly, there’s...

Read More