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Expansion of RL & French Teams Tue Oct 05, 2021 9:57 am  

User avatarBullseye wrote:
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Seems I'm unable to split threads anymore so I've posted some of the posts from the new signings thread below as it's a good debate and it deserved a thread of its own.

woolly07 wrote:
SL clubs will be delighted at having another club bringing no away support so they will all be hoping Fev make it.

Pumpetypump wrote:
I reckon Toulouse untaps greater SKY viewers and potentially better TV deals. I think that's got to be seen as being more important than the relative handful of Featherstone fans swelling home gates.

Bully_Boxer wrote:
Better TV deals? Toulouse have been around for long enough and Sky haven't shown much interest in broadcasting their matches before now.
I'm not sure what image it projects where we have to have the French sides in the English comp because their isn't enough players or sides to make up a competitive league in France. I guess it papers over a few cracks though and creates an illusion tha the game is expanding.

Bullseye wrote:
Well if you look at other sports then having some international club competition is seen as a benefit when attracting coverage and sponsorship. Now we're a million miles off this in RL so a couple of French clubs in SL is probably the best we can do at the moment. If we want to attract blue chip sponsors and not Foxy Bingo and Marrowfat Peas/Big Soup then we need to show we're not just a sport played by thick working class northerners.
Having Toulouse in the elite comp with Catalans helps give the game a less parochial look.

Bulls Boy 2011 wrote:
I think it could be good it Catalans and Toulouse can win their respective competitions.

Bully_Boxer wrote:
It's nonsense in RL though, the sport needs to prioritise getting the homelands strong. We've heard this all before with London.. presence in the capital is vital etc etc but they've generally been a joke moving from one place to another every season or so. Blue chip companies aren't going to look at RL with our without a couple of French side made up of a decent contingent of Aussies.

M@islebugs wrote:
45000 empty seats at Wembley exploded that myth for me. I don't quite get the RL's acute embarrassment at its own support base. There's something of the modern Labour party about it all.
I think this is interesting;
https://www.theguardian.com/sport/no-he ... per-league
Let's see what happens on Saturday night but at some point we need some evidence, i.e sold out stadiums with 'new' fans and TV deals increasing because of the draw of Les Catalans outside the heartland.
"If you start listening to the fans it won't be long before you're sitting with them," - Wayne Bennett.
Re: Expansion of RL & French Teams Tue Oct 05, 2021 12:06 pm  

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M@islebugs wrote:
There's something of the modern Labour party about it all.


Sort of. But how does the Labour party reconnect with quittling parts of the north like Wakefield and Leigh? The party machine knows brexit is a catastrophe for the working man and woman of the north. And yet the working man and woman of the north bloody love it. So either Labour lie about it and get them to come back, or they tell the truth and people keep voting blue which is exactly the same as taking a running kick at your own face.

Sorry. I'll shut up now.
Re: Expansion of RL & French Teams Tue Oct 05, 2021 3:37 pm  

M@islebugs wrote:
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Pumpetypump wrote:
Sort of. But how does the Labour party reconnect with quittling parts of the north like Wakefield and Leigh? The party machine knows brexit is a catastrophe for the working man and woman of the north. And yet the working man and woman of the north bloody love it. So either Labour lie about it and get them to come back, or they tell the truth and people keep voting blue which is exactly the same as taking a running kick at your own face.

Sorry. I'll shut up now.


Why doesn't it explain to them that they're horrible idiots who don't understand their own best interests because I'm guessing that's never happened before?
Re: Expansion of RL & French Teams Tue Oct 05, 2021 3:42 pm  

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Lots of definitions here. I'm happy with heartlands including York, Newcastle and Cumbria. Those 3 areas have either a large (NE) or wealthy (York) population and at least know what RL is. I'm not sure how a Cumbrian team gets into SL though as they currently are but that question has been rolling around for a long time.

In the short term, either Fev or Toulouse will get a shot. Toulouse are the better long term bet, as are Newcastle and York. Toulouse will not have financial issues, they'll have decent quality, wealthy sponsors lining up. They'll spend full cap immediately.

But they need to add value to the competition (crudely - what $$$ do the other clubs get) and that asks the questions - will there be higher value competition sponsors? will there be higher value TV deals in the combined pot? I think Toulouse now (sorry Fev) and then Newcastle in 2-3 years will increase value.
Pollsters doing Excellent job - say recent polls.
Re: Expansion of RL & French Teams Tue Oct 05, 2021 4:02 pm  

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Looking at how Catalans have developed into the best supported team in SL and the potential in the south of France (a heartland of the game) I think Toulouse could do very well. They're well financed and are far too too professional a setup for the championship.

I'm not sure York has the population and scope to be a successful SL club but they do things properly off the field in stark comparison with a few others including us and Fev. Cumbria is far too divided to ever get behind one team and that's what holds it back.

Newcastle will hopefully show what putting sound foundations in place can achieve. The game is growing there in contrast with some of the older "heartlands" and should be encouraged.
"If you start listening to the fans it won't be long before you're sitting with them," - Wayne Bennett.
Re: Expansion of RL & French Teams Wed Oct 06, 2021 9:00 am  

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M@islebugs wrote:
Why doesn't it explain to them that they're horrible idiots who don't understand their own best interests because I'm guessing that's never happened before?


That's sort of my point. They can't say that, and nor can they say with any credibility that leaving the EU was the right choice. They can't win. Anyway I'm not stamping my strong political views on here, I shouldn't have mentioned it.
Re: Expansion of RL & French Teams Wed Oct 06, 2021 9:15 am  

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Bully_Boxer wrote:
It's nonsense in RL though, the sport needs to prioritise getting the homelands strong. We've heard this all before with London.. presence in the capital is vital etc etc but they've generally been a joke moving from one place to another every season or so. Blue chip companies aren't going to look at RL with our without a couple of French side made up of a decent contingent of Aussies.


We need to strengthen our homelands I agree, but when there are genuine shoots of real expansion we need to really nurture it. Hemel was an example of a town where the game was actually being played in the schools (unthinkable!) and the future seemed really bright to get Hemel embedded into our league structure and growing. How did we manage to stuff that one up?! There's never going to be a better candidate for expansion and it was allowed to wither.
Re: Expansion of RL & French Teams Wed Oct 06, 2021 10:21 am  

User avatarBullseye wrote:
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We lost a load of development officers when we had a cut in Sport England funding IIRC. They do an invaluable job.
"If you start listening to the fans it won't be long before you're sitting with them," - Wayne Bennett.
Re: Expansion of RL & French Teams Sun Oct 10, 2021 11:37 am  

M@islebugs wrote:
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Sorry excuse my backward looking M62 myopia but 5 French players and swathes of empty seats. What is the upside? The French RL team is arguably worse than ever. If expansion means less people scattered over a greater geographical area then RL has achieved it.
Re: Expansion of RL & French Teams Sun Oct 10, 2021 2:21 pm  

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M@islebugs wrote:
Sorry excuse my backward looking M62 myopia but 5 French players and swathes of empty seats. What is the upside? The French RL team is arguably worse than ever. If expansion means less people scattered over a greater geographical area then RL has achieved it.

Hard to disagree. The sport is a mess at the moment and I don't see it getting better anytime soon with the current numpty Rimmer in the RFL hotseat and the SL clubs only voting whatever gives them the best short term gain.

Meanwhile whilst we are growing the game in France, crowds are dwindling over here and broadcasting deals seeing huge cuts. By all means, push for expansion but sure to god it has to be a position of strength rather than desperation.
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