EPL...educate me & help me pick a team

Spacemans Bong

chapeau rose
SoSH Member
The single biggest reason to support a fairly good team, top half of the table, is that a relegated team is going to be very hard to follow. I know BeIn shows some Championship games but I don't know how much. You don't see a lot of Fulham fans in the US anymore now that they've been relegated, because you can't freaking watch them.
 
So I guess that would be a caution against falling in love with the romance of Bournemouth (stadium capacity: 12,000) duking it out with United, Arsenal, Chelsea, Liverpool and Spurs, etc.
 

teddykgb

Member
SoSH Member
Jul 16, 2005
8,557
Chelmsford, MA
soxfan121 said:
Yeah, teddykgb really fouled that up. The "new ownership, lots of titles" thing was sitting there for him and LTF and neither invoked it.
 
LTF has disappeared.  It may fall to me to make the MCFC thread this season.  Bad Karma.
 
I don't really understand what I failed to invoke.  Just don't become a United fan, this is all that is important in the world.  And, increasingly, don't become a Liverpool fan unless you're comfortable with some Branch Davidian/Heaven's Gate style ending.
 
And yeah, I agree with above.  I love that jkempa supports Palace, as an example, but that's a tough road to hoe.  A bottom table team spends its season scrapping to stay in the Prem.  They're not going to be on TV and if they're relegated you're really going to have to work to see them again.
 
In addition, the OP is looking for a kind of team that flares up and out pretty constantly in the PL.  Today we'd say Southampton is the kind of team you're looking for, but realistically Soton may end up out of the Prem in 4 years just as much as they mights still be challenging for Europa league places.  So much can change so fast when you're not playing with a roster full of highly paid superstars.
 

Spacemans Bong

chapeau rose
SoSH Member
I was under the impression with NBC that seeing PL games is pretty straightforward now. If you've got cable, you'll have the ability via Sports Extra or whatever it's called to watch online or on TV. It's much different than the Fox Soccer Channel days when your team, if it was crap, would only be on TV playing a big team that would moider it.
 
But yeah, even clubs like Palace and Southampton that look like they could do great things - all they need is for a manager to leave, a new guy to fuck up a signing or two, their owners to sell to a clown, and it could become a nightmare.
 

Dummy Hoy

Angry Pissbum
SoSH Member
Jul 22, 2006
7,192
Falmouth
teddykgb said:
 
 
And yeah, I agree with above.  I love that jkempa supports Palace, as an example, but that's a tough road to hoe.  A bottom table team spends its season scrapping to stay in the Prem.  They're not going to be on TV and if they're relegated you're really going to have to work to see them again.
 
If you pick a team that gets relegated, it can be tough to catch that many games, but as long as your team is in the PL you can watch every single game, thanks to what NBC has done.

I tell you again- go with Everton. There's a history of Americans on the squad, nice shirts, cool history, almost certainly not going to be relegated, they have one of the better Derbies in the PL, they will occasionally challenge for Europe, and you won't be a douche for your affiliation with them. The current squad can be fun to watch and their manager is an interesting guy.
 

DJnVa

Dorito Dawg
SoSH Member
Dec 16, 2010
44,376
soxfan121 said:
 
Ok, you don't get it. But that's alright because you're new to it and lots of vacuous windbags have been pimping their teams instead of explaining it clearly. 
 
Every year, there are three (maybe four) teams with a chance to win. Out of twenty. None of the other sixteen or seventeen have a snowball's chance in hell of "winning" the League. If you are not a fan of Man United, Manchester City or Chelsea...and sometimes a fourth club, but not always ... you aren't "winning" jack or shit. So, if you want a "reasonable chance to win every year", you must choose one of those three clubs. 
 
Now, the noisy contingents of Arsenal, Liverpool and even Tottenham fans will quibble with that assessment. 
 
Tottenham fans won't.
 

OCST

Sunny von Bulow
SoSH Member
Jan 10, 2004
20,509
The 718
Dummy Hoy said:
If you pick a team that gets relegated, it can be tough to catch that many games, but as long as your team is in the PL you can watch every single game, thanks to what NBC has done.

I tell you again- go with Everton. There's a history of Americans on the squad, nice shirts, cool history, almost certainly not going to be relegated, they have one of the better Derbies in the PL, they will occasionally challenge for Europe, and you won't be a douche for your affiliation with them. The current squad can be fun to watch and their manager is an interesting guy.
This is what I did (or what happened to me).
 

DLew On Roids

guilty of being sex
Lifetime Member
SoSH Member
Aug 30, 2001
13,845
The Pine Street Inn
DrewDawg said:
 
Tottenham fans won't.
Yeah, that was a good rant by SF121, but like his claims in P&G that overweight women can find love without getting down to a size 2 and buying a new chest, it's more fantasy than reality. No one is going into the Liverpool thread and claiming they'll compete for a title.
 

finnVT

superspreadsheeter
SoSH Member
Jul 12, 2002
2,037
When I went through this exercise, I ended up with Sunderland, basically because it "felt" so much like rooting for the Sox (pre-2004 edition).  Old franchise, whose biggest success came ~100 years ago, with a loyal, large and tortured fan base, despite not being in the big population center.  And you get to root against the most obnoxious team in the PL and their asshole owner.  They also had (and still love) the first great american soccer player since i started paying attention-- claudio reyna.
 
Unfortunately, while all that angst has paid off in rooting for the Sox, Sunderland continue to hang out near the bottom of the table, employing child molesters and fascists.  So I can't really in good faith recommend them, but I'm in too deep now.
 

soxfan121

JAG
Lifetime Member
SoSH Member
Dec 22, 2002
23,043
DLew On Roids said:
Yeah, that was a good rant by SF121, but like his claims in P&G that overweight women can find love without getting down to a size 2 and buying a new chest, it's more fantasy than reality. No one is going into the Liverpool thread and claiming they'll compete for a title.
 
At no point in the recent past has the Liverpool contingent been all twitterpated about winning a title. 
 
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sBuOEI2Kk5o
 
Look, you asked for it. I was content to just mention it and move on, but you had to talk about fantasies. All of your psychically scarred Kop huffing brethren frantically clicking "BACK" have only you to blame. Demba Ba...not even a good player. 
 
Liverpool is the Cleveland of England.
 

URI

stands for life, liberty and the uturian way of li
Dope
Aug 18, 2001
10,329
soxfan121 said:
 
Now, the noisy contingents of Arsenal, Liverpool and even Tottenham fans will quibble with that assessment. But they're noisy windbags with selective memories. Arsenal and Liverpool used to be in that top group, but aren't anymore and haven't been for a decade or more. Tottenham never was, and as such, their fans tend to be a bit more realistic about their lot in life - spoiler for one of the "big clubs", as well as a place where great players develop into world class talents before departing for Real Madrid. 
 
Yeah, well...shut up.
 

DLew On Roids

guilty of being sex
Lifetime Member
SoSH Member
Aug 30, 2001
13,845
The Pine Street Inn
soxfan121 said:
 
At no point in the recent past has the Liverpool contingent been all twitterpated about winning a title. 
 

 
Look, you asked for it. I was content to just mention it and move on, but you had to talk about fantasies. All of your psychically scarred Kop huffing brethren frantically clicking "BACK" have only you to blame. Demba Ba...not even a good player. 
 
Liverpool is the Cleveland of England.
Does that make Newcastle the Flint or the Rochester?
 

blueline

Member
SoSH Member
Nov 23, 2012
317
soxfan121 said:
 
At no point in the recent past has the Liverpool contingent been all twitterpated about winning a title. 
 
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sBuOEI2Kk5o
 
Look, you asked for it. I was content to just mention it and move on, but you had to talk about fantasies. All of your psychically scarred Kop huffing brethren frantically clicking "BACK" have only you to blame. Demba Ba...not even a good player. 
 
Liverpool is the Cleveland of England.
 
It wasn't a fantasy that season. Liverpool probably should have won the title.
 

Infield Infidel

teaching korea american
SoSH Member
Jul 15, 2005
11,463
Meeting Place, Canada
finnVT said:
When I went through this exercise, I ended up with Sunderland, basically because it "felt" so much like rooting for the Sox (pre-2004 edition).  Old franchise, whose biggest success came ~100 years ago, with a loyal, large and tortured fan base, despite not being in the big population center.  And you get to root against the most obnoxious team in the PL and their asshole owner.  They also had (and still love) the first great american soccer player since i started paying attention-- claudio reyna.
 
Unfortunately, while all that angst has paid off in rooting for the Sox, Sunderland continue to hang out near the bottom of the table, employing child molesters and fascists.  So I can't really in good faith recommend them, but I'm in too deep now.
At least neither of us roots for Middlesborough, right? :wacko:

I recommend staying away from the northeast of England entirely. This goes for new fans as well as USMNT players
 

Stanley Steamer

Member
SoSH Member
Jan 11, 2012
1,254
Rossland, BC
Infield Infidel said:
I recommend staying away from the northeast of England entirely. This goes for new fans as well as USMNT players
Might as well add Yorkshire and the midlands to that rule.
Ah, fuck it, root for Leeds. We're going up this year anyway.
 

Jake Peavy's Demons

Member
SoSH Member
Nov 13, 2013
119
Hope you guys will excuse the bump...

I've been reading up on Ligue 1 teams since their 2015/16 season began. I've been conducting some research & have had difficulty finding a team.

Marseilles, Lyon, Nice, Saint-Étienne all have drawn my interest, so far. Under no circumstances am I interested in PSG.

I'm looking for a team that's always looking to make noise in the transfer window, but not overkill. I enjoy watching strong midfield play, and possession.

Any advice? Also, is it ludicrous to pick 1 team per major UEFA league?
 

soxfan121

JAG
Lifetime Member
SoSH Member
Dec 22, 2002
23,043
Are you likely to visit France at any point? There are worse reasons to pick a team than "I want to go to there" and see a game.

And if you've got the time, follow away. I've got a soft spot for Napoli (close to my ancestral homeland, supported by my cousins), Barcelona (I want to go to there & Messi), and Schalke (because one super club per pack of rooting interests).
 

sachmoney

Member
SoSH Member
Jun 14, 2008
9,513
Tim Thomas' Bunker
People will tell you otherwise, but you do what you want to do. You want a rooting interest in a team in each league, you can do that. As long as it works for you. Following one team takes a lot of time and energy. The only thing you'll have to deal with is those teams potentially meeting in Europe and having to pick a favorite child.

I know jack about Ligue 1, so I can't really help you. I'm not sure we have any regular contributors who watch Ligue 1. But I'm sure I will be corrected shortly.
 

Zososoxfan

Member
SoSH Member
Jul 30, 2009
6,903
South of North
Hope you guys will excuse the bump...

I've been reading up on Ligue 1 teams since their 2015/16 season began. I've been conducting some research & have had difficulty finding a team.

Marseilles, Lyon, Nice, Saint-Étienne all have drawn my interest, so far. Under no circumstances am I interested in PSG.

I'm looking for a team that's always looking to make noise in the transfer window, but not overkill. I enjoy watching strong midfield play, and possession.

Any advice? Also, is it ludicrous to pick 1 team per major UEFA league?
Monaco always seems to have talented young players, plus visiting Monaco seems like a solid bucket list item. Other teams worth looking into are Bordeaux and Nantes. Not saying I know much about the the Ligue, but those clubs have solid history and are mid table currently.
 

dirtynine

Well-Known Member
Silver Supporter
SoSH Member
Dec 17, 2002
5,981
Philly
A buddy of mine has been pulling for Lyon for some time. They have had recent success - dominating L1 in the 00s - but the era of ridiculous money at PSG (and around Europe) has tempered them a bit. Still, a well-loved team in a major, beautiful city, with a nice stadium, a history of achievement, probably European play every season, and a non-zero chance at a title in any given year.
 

teddykgb

Member
SoSH Member
Jul 16, 2005
8,557
Chelmsford, MA
Yeah, Lyon is the class of your list. The City is pretty although not overly so. The people down there are great and they just built a new stadium. They've been on a good run with Lacazette who maybe they should have sold at peak value but the club really seems to want to contend at the very least
 
I follow Olympique de Marseille since it has a solidly leftist political reputation and they're generally a solidly watchable team with some good club history of winning. Generally, I've found Ligue 1 a pretty enjoyable league, probably a little unfairly ignored in the States out of the major European leagues. I'm a West Ham supporter first and foremost, but I definitely subscribe to the notion that you can pick a rooting interest in any league you want to follow (and I do).
 

Jake Peavy's Demons

Member
SoSH Member
Nov 13, 2013
119
Thanks everyone for the replies. Looks like Marseille, Lyon, AS Monaco looking like strong possibilities.

@soxfan121 I do plan on visiting the country next summer, but will not have time to attend any fixtures. Also, what's crazy, I chose Napoli for Serie A, & FC Barça for La Liga awhile back. However, Borussia Dortmund for Bundesliga, so it appears there's a difference. Also, Arsenal (and Swansea) for EPL.

@Zososoxfan I also plan on visiting Monaco next summer, & the club did intrigue me. I wonder the politics of rooting for a Monégasque team AND a French team.

@WayBackVazquez Apologies. I didn't want to start a new thread. I posted on this one because the premise seemed similar.
 

soxfan121

JAG
Lifetime Member
SoSH Member
Dec 22, 2002
23,043
Thanks everyone for the replies. Looks like Marseille, Lyon, AS Monaco looking like strong possibilities.

@soxfan121 I do plan on visiting the country next summer, but will not have time to attend any fixtures. Also, what's crazy, I chose Napoli for Serie A, & FC Barça for La Liga awhile back. However, Borussia Dortmund for Bundesliga, so it appears there's a difference. Also, Arsenal (and Swansea) for EPL.
Well, nobody's perfect. ;-)

I never intended to pick an EPL team, as I greatly enjoyed rooting for whomever the underdog was during my first few years of watching. This is unlike Napoli, where there's a family connection, or Barcelona, where the quality is undeniable, and even Schalke, because I loved their roster while playing Football Manager.

But in the EPL I've decided to cast my lot with the team that most reminds me of rooting for the Red Sox when I was young: Newcastle United.
Terrible ownership? Check.
Perennially underachieving? Check.
Gut wrenching losses? Check.
Big fat guys in the bleachers? Check-plus.


Plus, I just couldn't jump on the Liverpool bandwagon and I couldn't bring myself to root for one of the super rich clubs. Tottenham was a possibility, but URI roots for them and he's a poopyface.
 

DLew On Roids

guilty of being sex
Lifetime Member
SoSH Member
Aug 30, 2001
13,845
The Pine Street Inn
Monaco is another financially doped club, albeit with more drama around whether they actually have money than PSG.

My first exposure to OM was the scandal of 1993, so they always carry a little taint for me. Then again, Marseilles is a town where a little taint just adds to the flavor, so that could be an enticing taint depending on how you look at it.
 

dirtynine

Well-Known Member
Silver Supporter
SoSH Member
Dec 17, 2002
5,981
Philly
The hardcore move would be to adopt Bob Bradley's Le Havre in Ligue 2 and cheer them to promotion (or doom).
 

Cellar-Door

Member
SoSH Member
Aug 1, 2006
21,529
A year ago the choice would have been easy, Marseilles was a really fun team. Bielsa managing, Payet, Thauvin, Gignac and Ayew. All gone now though.
Le Havre sounds tempting, but I assume that Bradley isn't going to play a very attractive style.
 

Jake Peavy's Demons

Member
SoSH Member
Nov 13, 2013
119
André Ayew is awesome; I have his Swansea kit. Monaco sure seems tempting after doing some research. Maybe I choose them & 1 of Lyon/Marseille. Nice would be out if I follow Monaco though, as it seems they're rivals.

And AS Monaco's stadium is a beaut...
 

DLew On Roids

guilty of being sex
Lifetime Member
SoSH Member
Aug 30, 2001
13,845
The Pine Street Inn
I fully expect Le Havre to become the French club that all the English hipsters who claim to love Dulwich Hamlet and St Pauli latch on to. Easy ferry access, American manager (they knew Americans could coach before it was cool, port city (so it's working class--like Marseilles but more hardcore because it's cold!).
 

Infield Infidel

teaching korea american
SoSH Member
Jul 15, 2005
11,463
Meeting Place, Canada
I fully expect Le Havre to become the French club that all the English hipsters who claim to love Dulwich Hamlet and St Pauli latch on to. Easy ferry access, American manager (they knew Americans could coach before it was cool, port city (so it's working class--like Marseilles but more hardcore because it's cold!).
Are you Barry Glendenning?
 

Tangled Up In Red

Well-Known Member
Lifetime Member
SoSH Member
Nov 8, 2004
3,495
Bernal
Is there a reason AS Roma and their sweet unsponsored unis should not be my Italian club (most recent result notwithstanding)?
I know little about the league except some shitty ultras (lazio? Others?)
 

Cellar-Door

Member
SoSH Member
Aug 1, 2006
21,529
Is there a reason AS Roma and their sweet unsponsored unis should not be my Italian club (most recent result notwithstanding)?
I know little about the league except some shitty ultras (lazio? Others?)
They also have shitty Ultras. Not facists like Lazio, but they are violent thugs.
https://web.archive.org/web/20100915024920/http://timesonline.typepad.com:80/thegame/2009/03/ahead-of-the-14.html
Also racist chants. etc.
Problem is going to be that basically all of the Italian teams have scummy fans, so if you want to follow Serie A you'll probably have to live with the fact that your team has an ultras group that are scumbags.
 

Cellar-Door

Member
SoSH Member
Aug 1, 2006
21,529
Y'all should dump your top 6 clubs and pick West Ham... long history, good kits, London.
Our owners are scumbags, but not ultra-rich scumbags, but rather penny pinching opportunist pornographers/sex toy salesmen.
 

candylandriots

unkempt
Lifetime Member
SoSH Member
Mar 30, 2004
9,829
Berlin
I'll put out my lonely request for Crystal Palace, again. I've probably told the story, but I went to London to see the 49ers play, and decided to go see an EPL game while there. I wanted to see a "big" club. The only way I could get tickets was to become a member of Crystal Palace, who were playing Arsenal at home. I went in there thinking, I'll become an Arsenal fan today ("Fever Pitch", though I've never seen the dumb movie). It was their first year back in the PL. I thought they outplayed Arsenal, even though they lost 0-2. I've hardly missed a match since. It's a working class team, but still in London, so not too hard to get to. Principal owner is a lifelong fan of the team.They have some very exciting players, though ofter less exciting strategy. The stadium environment is second to none in the league (possible exception of Craven Cottage) -- small and old stadium with passionate fans throughout. People who care a lot more about the game than about wining. It's probably the most multi-cultural team/fanbase/neighborhood in London, if not the EPL. There is a lot to like, except the consistently mediocre results. But aside from Brighton, and probably Watford fans, nobody else is going to hate you, and probably most will respect you for being a Palace fan.

That said, I'm about 30% convinced that Jose Mourinho will be their next manager. I kind of think his "park the bus" mentality will be perfect for the team, if that happens to work out, but do your own homework on that. But they will be entering their 9th consecutive season in the league. That's not to say they have not flirted with relegation at all (they have), but at least it hasn't been a yo-yo since I've been a fan.

Someone else at least should join me. One of you guys?
 

Dummy Hoy

Angry Pissbum
SoSH Member
Jul 22, 2006
7,192
Falmouth
Not compared to Leeds, which would be another fine pick these days.
great while Bielsa is here but after that you’re forever stuck rooting for a bunch of bottlers with one of the worst fan bases in England. @Stanley Steamer is an obvious exception to this rule...it’d be nice to give him a fellow poster for his Leeds thread.
 

Cellar-Door

Member
SoSH Member
Aug 1, 2006
21,529
I'll put out my lonely request for Crystal Palace, again. I've probably told the story, but I went to London to see the 49ers play, and decided to go see an EPL game while there. I wanted to see a "big" club. The only way I could get tickets was to become a member of Crystal Palace, who were playing Arsenal at home. I went in there thinking, I'll become an Arsenal fan today ("Fever Pitch", though I've never seen the dumb movie). It was their first year back in the PL. I thought they outplayed Arsenal, even though they lost 0-2. I've hardly missed a match since. It's a working class team, but still in London, so not too hard to get to. Principal owner is a lifelong fan of the team.They have some very exciting players, though ofter less exciting strategy. The stadium environment is second to none in the league (possible exception of Craven Cottage) -- small and old stadium with passionate fans throughout. People who care a lot more about the game than about wining. It's probably the most multi-cultural team/fanbase/neighborhood in London, if not the EPL. There is a lot to like, except the consistently mediocre results. But aside from Brighton, and probably Watford fans, nobody else is going to hate you, and probably most will respect you for being a Palace fan.

That said, I'm about 30% convinced that Jose Mourinho will be their next manager. I kind of think his "park the bus" mentality will be perfect for the team, if that happens to work out, but do your own homework on that. But they will be entering their 9th consecutive season in the league. That's not to say they have not flirted with relegation at all (they have), but at least it hasn't been a yo-yo since I've been a fan.

Someone else at least should join me. One of you guys?
We're rejecting you because Josh Harris owns you, it's a bridge too far.
 

candylandriots

unkempt
Lifetime Member
SoSH Member
Mar 30, 2004
9,829
Berlin
We're rejecting you because Josh Harris owns you, it's a bridge too far.
That's fair...but those fuckers want out and the feeling is quite mutual.

I used to cover Apollo back in my previous life, and I want them out too. I hope that they dropped millions into the team, and don't get it out.

We'd like a free stadium though ;)
 
I'll put out my lonely request for Crystal Palace, again. I've probably told the story, but I went to London to see the 49ers play, and decided to go see an EPL game while there. I wanted to see a "big" club. The only way I could get tickets was to become a member of Crystal Palace, who were playing Arsenal at home. I went in there thinking, I'll become an Arsenal fan today ("Fever Pitch", though I've never seen the dumb movie). It was their first year back in the PL. I thought they outplayed Arsenal, even though they lost 0-2. I've hardly missed a match since. It's a working class team, but still in London, so not too hard to get to. Principal owner is a lifelong fan of the team.They have some very exciting players, though ofter less exciting strategy. The stadium environment is second to none in the league (possible exception of Craven Cottage) -- small and old stadium with passionate fans throughout. People who care a lot more about the game than about wining. It's probably the most multi-cultural team/fanbase/neighborhood in London, if not the EPL. There is a lot to like, except the consistently mediocre results. But aside from Brighton, and probably Watford fans, nobody else is going to hate you, and probably most will respect you for being a Palace fan.
The soccer movie of Fever Pitch isn't great, but it isn't terrible either. ("Dumb" isn't quite the word I'd use, unless you're talking about the Red Sox version of the film - which I refuse to see, and so can't really comment about.)

I've actually been to Selhurst Park twice, btw - but on both occasions Wimbledon was the home club, which gives you a sense of how long ago this was. And at the second of those two matches (against Arsenal), the floodlights went out in what we think was one of those attempts by an Eastern betting syndicate to fix the match; my now wife was there with me, at what I think was the first and to this point only Premier League match she's ever attended, so that's something.
bump.....in light of recent events, should this be renamed to Help Me Pick a non-Super League team?
To be honest, I think there's a lot of enjoyment and certainly a wide range of experiences to be had in picking a club outside of the Big Six. For one thing, nobody will accuse you of jumping on a bandwagon, and the bonds you'll form with your club will be deeper: less about winning things and more about the club itself. But if your club does then win something - a cup, or maybe even the league if you're Leicester City - the elation you'll feel will blow away the elation that fans of a bigger club for winning something. And if it gets sucked into a relegation battle, you get to feel something no American sports fan normally gets to experience. And if it then gets relegated, you get to feel sorry for your club...and then you get to savor life in the Championship, which might be the most exciting and parity-driven league in world football. (The only downside is that I'm not sure how easy it is to watch a Championship club's matches on TV in the States.) So whether it's Crystal Palace or Southampton or Burnley, or even a former Football League champion like Leeds or even a former European Cup winner like Aston Villa which is largely down on its luck, or even Leicester City or maybe West Ham if you must start by picking a team in the upper half of the table, there are plenty of options. Just start watching matches and do a bit of reading - even if just Wikipedia pages - and see if you connect with a club in some way.