Years of talk about Scottish footballing giants Rangers and Celtic joining the English Premier League may have been considered fruitless until now. The blue side of Glashow has taken substantial steps to impose itself an international brand: The first being to open offices in London.
This may be the first of many moves that Rangers is looking to take. The club will open its London office with the view to expand its international brand to overseas market. The obvious impact to promote Rangers’ brand would be the induction into the English Premier League where television and sponsorship money seems to be endless.
This newly created post will be embedded in its global strategy to maximize expose and will try to win new supporters, as well as proving to the Premier League that the club would be of great benefit to the organisation to attract new vested income from a series of big Scottish companies.
Glasgow Rangers is a world-renowned brand with tremendous history and is the Scottish equivalent to Liverpool or Manchester United, however they do not generate the revenue or gain the exposure that their English counterparts achieve.
This move to the capital of Britain will help the club discover more integral links with new sponsors, broaden its commercial pull and more importantly, try to ‘steal’ some of the income that the richer London clubs receive from football.
This move speaks volumes about the Scottish Premier League though. Scottish football is seen as weak and positively unattractive. Wages are diminishing and its impact on European football, once so vibrant, is now almost non-existent. The SPL needs a revamp and the perception now associated with the league is concerning for those involved. Four of its members have entered administration recently, as it drastically tries to recapture its past glories.
The truth is, outside Glasgow the crowds are decreasing and the standard of football makes the English’s League One (The old Division Three) looks rather decent. Scotland’s international stars are moving to Championship clubs instead of plying their trade for the big Scottish clubs. It is disheartening. English football standard may have slipped recently but it maintains its pulling power by the power of clever PR and global advertising.
SPL lacks the function.
The English Football League revamped the structure of the leagues and introduced the ‘Championship’ in the 2004/2005 season to boost decreasing crowds. Guest what? It worked.
The division is now the fourth most watched in Europe and the Play-Off final receives fantastic viewing figures. Currently, the Football League has television rights with both the BBC and Sky Sports, and the amazing recovery since the collapse of ITV Digital shows that there is a lot of money in football if it advertised correctly.
It is about changing perception. Rangers moving to London may not be a crisis, but if they move to the Premier League then it will be.
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