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Maximus Decimus

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Everything posted by Maximus Decimus

  1. This is an over-simplification I feel and does a diservice to the club to say we are reliant on a sugar daddy. Without him we still get the biggest crowds and have the joint best ground. We also made the best stab of Super League out of any of the current championship clubs. Let's not forget that we were one game away on two occasions from being a Super League club and had we won either of those we would be a shoe in for a continued SL license. This is all without Steve O'Connor. At the same time you have a club like Wakefield who have been one game away from relegation and probable permanent SL exclusion. That is how fine a line Widnes were from being a permanent member of SL, no other Championship clubs were in this situation. Therefore it's unfair to put all of Widnes' reasons for inclusion on a sugar daddy. Barrow are a different matter, their success is largely built on a sugar daddy, one who has made comments that don't make him seem reliable. Plus despite his money Barrow still haven't many other boxes ticked.
  2. Good point but it also says 'those who are eligible to play in the Academy,' there may be a fair few who are home grown but aren't. I don't want to focus too much on the playing side of things because it is not what licensing is about. The point is that it is too easy to point to a team doing well in the league and say that means they deserve to be in. There are many other factors under licensing. Aside from the fact that Widnes have had no coach for a large portion of this year and have had key players out, we have also been clearly trying to get more club trained players in the squad and playing in the team. This is what licensing is supposed to be about. No other club in the division has focussed on this in the same way and are only recently been trying to rectify it whereas Widnes have been doing it since the last round of franchising. If it wasn't about being awarded licenses then priorities would be different. As often happens the club with the biggest and best resources inevitably gets promoted over a short period of time. Why would Widnes bother spending big on going all out to win the Championship when it adds almost nothing to our bid. I don't think for a second we thought we'd miss the playoffs but we wanted to be in the mix and the squad we had should have enabled that. Widnes can't be blamed for playing the game the way the RFL asked, tick a box on the field and spend the rest getting off the field right. Many on here seem to think this is somehow Widnes fault or that we should be punished for not finishing high enough. Once again this is not what licensing is about, it might stink and it might be killing the Championship as a competition but that is not Widnes' fault.
  3. Grow up Mick. You know full well that what Super League classes as a youth policy amounts to far more than what you're suggesting. How are Barrow doing in the U18's Super League Academy? Just because you dislike the truth doesn't change it.
  4. We are well known to be the only team that runs an U18's team at Super League level. I'm not trying to denigrate other clubs efforts but as far as I am aware, we are the only side that would meet the criteria for youth development.
  5. Widnes fans have been through it at least as much as any other club in that and we fully appreciate the fortunate situation that we are in. However it doesn't excuse other fans constantly trying to undermine the fact that we are best placed to go up. The likes of Lobby are just bitter and are trying to blame the problems of the championship on Widnes, the irony is that if we still had P and R then Widnes would be most likely to go up. We are the biggest club in a small pond and over time this inevitably tells under that system.
  6. Yes when they are included in your squad. Widnes have a large number of their squad taken up with juniors purely to try and meet the criteria for Super League. These also come from a junior devleopment system that nobody else in the league is able to fund. We could have just filled these spots with more experienced RL players from outside of Widnes but then that's not what franchising is supposed to be about is it?
  7. You're sounding pathetic now. You shift one day to the next about which club instead of Widnes should be included at the next round of licensing. You haven't really ever got it that it's not all about on the pitch. Widnes have ticked that box and concentrated on other matters. If it was purely about on the field we would have a better squad, simple as. The fact is that we are the only club that has spent this round of licensing trying to fit the criteria for Super League and that includes the youth and home grown players in the squad. No other club comes close to us on this. Widnes are best placed for a license and as much that rankles with you it's true. We have and have had better crowds than the rest of the clubs in the division for at least a decade, we have a stadium that is bettered by no-one in the league and we have a proper youth policy. Of course it causes resentment amongst other fans but it doesn't change the fact. So please stop with your absurd anti-Widnes posts blaming us for all the problems of the Championship. It's starting to sound as bad as your rectangular stadium issue although admittedly nowhere near as funny.
  8. This is just completely untrue and not what licensing is supposed to be about. Licensing is about picking the best 14 clubs at that point, not about adding something to Super League. This comes from the fact that it is a grossly unfair system. You could place Widnes, Barrow and Halifax in Super League in place of Salford, Cas and Wakey and they could be forever excluded as they would add nothing new to Super League.
  9. I completely agree, its so obvious that I don't see why we haven't followed suit. We're a sport with so much rich history we should celebrate it more. The others sounds good, like has been pointed out it's a free form of marketing, gives the newspapers something to report on. It wouldn't cost a lot either.
  10. In true Rugby League stylee we can't have a positive without a negative so... Its not a good sign when St Helens youth are losing to a school from Brisbane.
  11. People don't like to be told that the club that they follow is sh!t and useless when in reality they have no obligation to follow a club in the first place. Franchising has created a great deal of bitterness in the sport and it will drive fans away in the long run. You're not going to follow a sport if your not wanted. That said the petition is pathetic. It makes me laugh when people start them up as if they have the consent of the masses when in reality I'd be surprised if they had the consent of the majority at all. There are some semi-valid points, I think the game is struggling a lot more than people like to think simply because of Super League crowds. The rest of it is largely nonsense, the game cannot survive as a heartlands only sport and it will eventually get swamped by other much larger and more prestigious sports if it does not offer a viable alternative to them. The same 12/14 teams largely based around small uninspiring northern towns isn't it.
  12. People talk about RL being a game that is perfect for television. 3D is just going to make that even more so. I honestly don't think any other sport will be suited to 3D as RL is. The views were the same sort of views you get when you're at a game but better because you can't move around at a game and see close ups of the action. Nothing will ever replace watching a game live but this is going to come damn close.
  13. It was really cool but there were teething problems, mainly coming from the pubs! The first one we went had ran out of glasses, which was pathetic seeing as though they only had about 20 people in there watching. The second had placed it in the top corner of the room and it was only after about 60 minutes that I figured out you needed to watch it at eye level to see it in 3D, so we spent the rest of the time stood on the seats. Most watching had long left the pub at this point thinking 3D was either rubbish or it didn't work in that pub. Loved the camera angles, like Dave said, it was like the Grand Final where they change the angle but it actually works in 3D.
  14. Totally agree. Plus the biff was a disgrace and the fact that the game was close just means that we have two teams that are a poor standard.
  15. Never mind Hull KR fans, the most gutted person right now is Kevin Keegan. He was very nearly overtaken in the 'most stupid comment that comes back to bite you on the ######,' stakes. At least with Phil Clarke there is hope for him yet.
  16. Don't be silly the funding is fully in place for both stadia and they are due to start building in the next week or so just in time for 2012. To anybody with half a brain a shared stadium makes the most sense. Going for their own grounds prevents either from getting one. I feel the same way about the likes of Everton and Liverpool. Why waste money (often taxpayers) on two separate grounds?
  17. Including a 35-16 defeat to Batley at home recently! I think it'll be closer than that, we tend to rise for finals but I think that Batley should be favourites. Gonna be a cracker. Widnes have sold 4300 which is quite a way up on last year, which itself is a surprise seeing as though the prestige linked to the game is much less.
  18. There's simply not enough prestige involved. We're a sport that is small internationally and domestically. There's not really a bangwagon to jump on. If we were to win the Quad nations we would get a degree of publicity purely from the fact that we haven't won it in so long. That would create increased interest inevitably but for RL to ever get anything like that level of support, it needs more countries playing the game at a good level.
  19. The problem with the Upper middle class theory is that English Rugby Union is hardly full to the brim with world class athletes. In fact our oik sport that generally gets the football cast offs does a better job of producing them.
  20. It beats the pathetic one-eyed Widnes bashing that we constantly get from you. The only reason anybody commented on this thread is because you constantly comment on Widnes threads. It was a personal attack at you to show your hypocrisy. You can put whatever spin you like on it, but Widnes still far far outweigh Barrow. One of your biggest games of the season and you still get nearly 35% lower than what our lowest crowd will be, Better stadium Better crowds Better juniors On the pitch matters far less with licensing. We decided to invest in our youth so that we could pass the criteria rather than invest in players for the short term. In the long run ours will pay off far better than yours. You may have woken up but it's far too late. You also make our like Barrow are a team on the up, as has been pointed out your average is down 4-500. Your average last year was 2,302 but this year you can only get 2,000 for Leigh? Most Widnes fans like to see Barrow do well, but unfortunately when it comes the forums your doing a brilliant job of making sure that isn't the case. You're just Lobbygobbler for Barrow, trying to chip away at Widnes all the time in the hope that Barrow will get picked over us. You may well be but if you are it will have nothing to do with any licensing criteria.
  21. The problem of this is that you are massively reducing your spread. The phrase, 'putting your eggs in one basket' comes to mind. What happens if a club like Bradford fails and needs replacing? Who is there to replace them with? I'd say there are at least 10,000 fans who follow RL in Widnes. I'd be surprised if 1,000 of these started following the Wire, Wigan or Saints if we packed up tomorrow.
  22. I think this was my point. As attendances haven't really been affected (in Super League at least) it's been easy to say that franchising and licensing hasn't had an effect and this is what I had thought for the last couple of seasons. But I would disagree on your second point. As a Widnes fan who has experienced relegation, promotion, relegation and now licensing I can say that I have seen a change. For the years that we were out of Super League the first time, it was all about getting promoted to be back with the big boys. A few times we were genuine challengers and games were exciting. When we were in Super League we were never so safe that relegation wasn't an issue and I remember even a few games into the season once we had a must win game against Castleford for relegation reasons. As a fan you're looking at the fixture list wondering where you could pick up wins to stay up and then those games become more important. Then of course there was the absolute desolation of being relegated and subsequent failure to get promoted. I'm not making any protest to the way RL is ran or boycotting top level RL but the fact is that neither I or my 2 brothers are nearly as interested as we used to be. There is a certain amount of waiting for Super League but at the same time the games genuinely lack excitement because they lack meaning. I'm not even going to Blackpool for the Northern Rail and I've only been a handful of games this year. When I do go I go as much out of loyalty as a desire to watch a game. The perfect example was Thursday, one of my brothers hadn't even realised we were on TV and the two of us that had were hardly buzzing with excitement about it. Basically you have 3 people who were die-hard Widnes fans and would talk nothing else when together. Now you have one who is more interested in his Football and another who is more interested in his U13's RL side. Then there is me, I help out with the U13's and have got more enjoyment out of them than following Widnes in the last 12 months. Just a few years ago I could never have envisioned not following Widnes like a die-hard. Like I said this is no anti-RL reaction, just a realisation of the effect that taking away true P&R has had on how my family follow their local RL club. Of course the Championship is one thing and is a problem area for RL but I honestly don't think following a low level Super League club would massively change this apathy I have at the moment. After the early season delusions of grandeur, the interest would drop off after it became apparent that we weren't going to challenge and effectively had little resting on the games but pride. Crowds may stay relatively high, largely because of season tickets shifted and local derbies but aside from that real interest may not be there. For me licensing will only work in Super League if we truly get a system like the NRL where a team can go from bottom to top in a short space of time. The battle for the playoffs could replace this anticipation of a relegation battle but only if it is genuine. Last years poor showing by Wakefield and Huddersfield after what were good years on the pitch damaged the playoff system I thought. It suggested that when it matters the big teams still win and comfortably so despite everything else. This cannot happen overnight but I think the consequences of it not working could be really bad for RL. If Widnes aren't in SL at the next round of licensing I think that will be it, because I feel like I am witnessing the slow death of a club similar to what fans of many once proud clubs have seen.
  23. My point is more about unseen factors associated with this. P & R was far from perfect and I'm still not advocating bringing it back, yet. I agree that licensing should bring more stability but it may be damaging the game in other ways. I was sat with my brothers last night and we were talking about this and they agreed with me that we haven't been excited about a Widnes game since the Northern Rail last year. 2 out of 3 of us aren't going the final this year, it just isn't a necessity especially when money is tight. Basically there's nothing riding on it and that's how it feels about 99% of games. Even were we to get promoted in 2012 we would still be playing most of our games with nothing riding on them. In the past much of the excitement has come from the real necessity to get a win otherwise we may be dragged into a relegation battle. This isn't going to be the case and it is really taking away from the excitement of the sport for me and others that I know. The only way to combat this is for their to be genuine competition to win Super League. I fear for the teams at the bottom end of the league if the same clubs carry on winning every year. The sport itself isn't enough, this has been proved time and time again.
  24. But what are you trying to entice fans to games with? The same old, same old. The fans that are going are not interested and think the games lack excitement, hardly a way to get new people to go. We shouldn't be nervous unless we're screwed. It's massively unrealistic to expect Widnes to get that sized crowds in a league that has seen it's average drop when we are already the big fish in a small pond. Even if our crowds have dropped we're still streets ahead of anybody else. Widnes fans are waiting for Super League, I know because I'm one of them. If we don't get it next time, that'll be it for Widnes. We're not interested in this League, without P and R it's no more prestigious than non-League football. Like I said, the product on it's own is not enough.
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