Why England's premiership attracts "the East"

Hailing the success of three English Premier League clubs reaching the semi-finals of the UEFA Champions League, CEO Richard Scudamore described the Premiership as the "envy'' of other European leagues. "Other leagues do envy what we are doing. The Premiership is the best it has ever been in terms of success [in Europe] and the quality of football played. I am wowed often now by what I see in games. Look at last weekend: Portsmouth beat Man United, West Ham beat Arsenal, and then Watford beat Portsmouth and then we have this in the Champions League. It is hard to think it gets much better than this. Remember, these teams are distributing their TV money across 20 clubs and competing against teams in Europe who are keeping it all for themselves, like Spain and Italy, where the clubs have all their own TV money. Reaching the later stages of the Champions League is a very simple blunt measure of a league's success, but it is still a badge of achievement. There will be other seasons when we don't get as many teams this far through, and it doesn't alter the status of the Premier League. But clearly this is very exceptional in the history of our clubs," he told Henry Winter of The Telegraph.

"The further East you go, the more the combative, pacey nature of our game is the bit that attracts them,'' said Scudamore, expanding on the Premiership's global appeal. "The cut and thrust of the Premiership attracts them in the East. I know that's the bit some of the purists criticise but that is why our clubs are of such interest around the world. That is perhaps why we are not so much (of a draw) in South America, because it is not the Latin style, but when you go through Africa, North America or Asia, we are the leading choice because of the way we play. If you are a neutral sitting in a foreign country, the pace of Reading against Tottenham last Sunday is why we are so attractive."

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