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Rugby League World Cup 2021 (Merged Threads)


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30 minutes ago, Big Picture said:

I note none of the examples you gave is residents of a big city supporting a team based in and carrying the name of one of it's suburbs,

Chelsea, Tottenham Hotspur, Fulham, Brentford, West Ham United, Aston Villa, Everton will all be in the Premier League this season.

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1 hour ago, The Hallucinating Goose said:

I've found this to be true in the past. I remember when I was a teenager and through friends ended up hanging out with loads of other kids from up the road in Beverley for a few years. I was the only kid that watched rugby league, the only kid that knew anything about rugby league in fact, none of them knew the first thing about it, didn't even know that two of the top teams were based in Hull.

They were all football fans, and not even fans of Hull City but mainly just Premier League teams they'd never even been to watch. I remember a kid that supported Everton but I can't for the life of me remember why. Can't remember what other random teams people supported. 

Point is, this was a group of teenagers from just 8 miles away from Hull that had absolutely no awareness of the sport which highlights how small the reach of RL is unfortunately. 

Your account correlates to what I experienced in England. 

I don’t think RL is insular or deliberately shuts itself away (as mo chara Frisky would like). In fact I think the sport is very open to outsiders (playing games on location around the country, which no other sport does to my knowledge). I think the parochial label comes from the perception outsiders have of the sport, a sport rooted in a certain geographic location with such a strong bond to their communities. Tony Collins in his podcast said RL is unlike any other with it’s coal mining roots (although there’s a few famous managers/players in football who worked down the pit, namely Shankly, Busby and Stein, the three most important individuals at Liverpool, Man United and Celtic)...but I’ll bow to his greater knowledge. It’s a sport entrenched in its own area, and it’s never broken out from it. The positive with this parochialism is so long as those communities remain RL will always be strong there, but the negative is the inaccessibility for outsiders to mentally connect with them. There’s probably a similarlity with RL clubs and smaller football clubs in that unless you have a connection with the area you’d almost feel as those you are intruding with supporting either. The big football clubs (or NFL teams) there isn’t this parochialism hence someone from Cairo (akin to the lads you knew from Hull) being as passionate a Liverpool fan as someone born within 3 miles of Liverpool city centre. 

There will be tens of thousands of scousers as passionate about Liverpool FC as me but there will be none more passionate, and this feeling is replicated around the world.

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2 minutes ago, gingerjon said:

Chelsea, Tottenham Hotspur, Fulham, Brentford, West Ham United, Aston Villa, Everton will all be in the Premier League this season.

All of which are clubs established long ago and based in big cities and the biggest among them are well known to be big city clubs.

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1 hour ago, Dave T said:

This simply is not true no matter how many times you say it. 

People support teams in all sports for all sorts of reasons. 

I'm from Warrington in Cheshire, but I support Man City and Lancashire Cricket, despite caring little for the city and county. 

My wife is from Glasgow and supports Warrington. My mate is from Nottingham and supports Arsenal. I know lads from Wales who support Warrington, Widnes, St Helens and Salford. I know Southerners who support Wigan. I have convinced loads of my Scottish mates to follow Wire. 

People support teams for all sorts of reasons - parents, favourite players, friends, kits, one-off games, colours etc. 

 

When I was a postie in deepest, darkest and very rural Perthshire, I delivered a parcel to a remote cottage. The woman who answered the door was wearing a piece of Warrington Wolves merchandise (a jacket if memory serves...)

I asked about her connection, if any, with the club and town. None, she'd picked it up in a charity shop. 

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35 minutes ago, Big Picture said:

That's why anyone backing a new club or franchise there would have to give them a reason to care about it.  That's as true in Manchester as it is in London or anywhere else where the game is unknown to most and looked down on by most of the remainder.

I know you have espoused it many times but the Field of Dreams approach will not and repeatedly has not worked for RL. In Manchester specifically anyone wanting to watch a successful team has a choice of two cashed up, trophy laden, massive association football clubs. Having someone come in and buy up a group of top international RL players and get them into the UK system (this is where they have to play - your multi franchise billionaire funded start-up league is a whole warehouse full of pie in the sky - I like your enthusiasm but it simply wouldn't work) will not equate to having thousands turn up each week out of nowhere to watch them. The UK is not like other sports markets, our clubs stick to one location, without a very visible international team playing regularly other places will not spawn interest. Football is just too massive for anything else new to get a foothold at anything other than niche level.

That is not to say that we cannot have new clubs across the country start up. We can and have done, but for those it takes a lot of hard work and dedication over many years and even after that the measure of success is not the number of trophies in the cabinet, it is to simply still exist. A club heralded by many as one on the rise and a bright hope for the future in Newcastle Thunder is only now back in the second tier for the second time since it was founded by a few dedicated enthusiasts around 2 decades ago following the collapse of the attempted SL club that was its forerunner. Twenty years to get to be a mid table team in the second tier despite a rich owner and being owned by a company with a history of success in club RU. I don't mean to belittle Newcastle Thunder at all, far from it. They are exactly what success for an expansion (for want of a better word) RL club means. They exist and are building after two decades and have helped to spark a growing community RL scene across their catchment area. Hopefully they do ultimately achieve what we all hope they will but it has taken and will take further decades to do so.

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8 minutes ago, Big Picture said:

All of which are clubs established long ago and based in big cities and the biggest among them are well known to be big city clubs.

They are well supported clubs named after the suburbs of the big cities in which they are located.

So, to be fair, it appears you’re talking absolute cobblers.

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Build a man a fire, and he'll be warm for a day. Set a man on fire, and he'll be warm for the rest of his life. (Terry Pratchett)

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34 minutes ago, gingerjon said:

They are well supported clubs named after the suburbs of the big cities in which they are located.

So, to be fair, it appears you’re talking absolute cobblers.

Everton is not a suburb, it's within the city of Liverpool and as far as I can tell always has been.  Aston is likewise not a suburb, it's in inner Birmingham according to Wikipedia.  And you'll probably find that the London boroughs have always been considered integral parts of London, not suburbs.

In any case all those clubs were established in a different era than the one we live in now, and attitudes have changed since those days.  Are Man U or Man City fans going to get excited about their team playing Blackburn, Bolton or Preston like they will about them playing Liverpool, Spurs or Arsenal?  I think we both know that's unlikely.

Edited by Big Picture
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1 hour ago, Big Picture said:

Are you talking about Everton there?  According to Wikipedia Everton is a district in Liverpool, Goodison Park is only 3 km from Liverpool city centre and Everton moved there from Anfield.  That certainly makes Everton a Liverpool team and thus it's entirely acceptable to Liverpudlians.  The difference between them and St Helens is like night and day.

I wasn't disputing that, but I note none of the examples you gave is residents of a big city supporting a team based in and carrying the name of one of it's suburbs, though I grant that could happen if some of those city dwellers have a personal connection of some sort to it.  There won't be too many in that category though.

That's quite a niche way of criticising the makeup of SL. 

If you are based in Liverpool but enjoy RL you have plenty of very good teams within 15 minutes. 

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2 minutes ago, Dave T said:

That's quite a niche way of criticising the makeup of SL. 

If you are based in Liverpool but enjoy RL you have plenty of very good teams within 15 minutes. 

I'm hardly the only person who's noticed that SL doesn't have any Super clubs in it.

Liverpudlians could do what you suggest there, but we both know that very few of them are ever likely to.

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Just now, Big Picture said:

I'm hardly the only person who's noticed that SL doesn't have any Super clubs in it.

Liverpudlians could do what you suggest there, but we both know that very few of them are ever likely to.

You should just go and find another hobby tbh 

Maybe a sport that meets your extremely niche and pedantic needs, with due respect. 

You don't like what SL is, you want something different, there are different things out there for you to enjoy. 

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3 hours ago, DC77 said:

Firstly you cannot compare a global sport to a parochial one. 

In the north (and south) of Ireland we are quite unique when it comes to football in that most of our players (of any quality) go to England/Scotland, thus the professional game there is one we are instantly connected to. And as I said these teams are international in scope so with football being a global sport it has global interest. A young Irish footballer (and many around the globe) dreams of playing for a Liverpool, or a Manchester United, or a Celtic, club’s players (and fans) are drawn to. Liverpool FC with its world famous anthem (almost certainly THE most famous in all of sport) it carries a universal message that anyone around the world can relate to. The team also play games around the world, as do Man United and other teams. 

Conversely, domestic leagues in Union and League are parochial in that teams generate next to no interest outside their own geographic location. This has shackled them immensely. As I said before, in Liverpool St Helens is seen as being for St Helens, which leaves them detached from a city just 15 miles down the road. The result of this lack of wider appeal means they play before crowds akin to a 3rd/4th tier English football club. 

Surely the aim is for teams not to be so parochial? To broaden their appeal, to be more inclusive, for people from outside to feel a connection. To use a RL follower from Wales as an example (since the Welsh has some RL identity), your argument is basically “I don’t know how a Welsh person can be a passionate supporter of St Helens (insert any other English RL name here), they should be supporting Pontypridd Gladiators, or Llanelli Wild Stallions...infront of two dozen (family members of players) and the chap who walks his dog past the field.” 

 

None of that changes the fact that it has destroyed the domestic game in Ireland and thus weakened Irish football as a whole. It was grand back in the day when English clubs rarely looked outside Britain and Ireland for academy players, now Irish lads have to compete against the rest or world for places, hence why most of the lads are now confined to the lower leagues, instead of playing in what could be fully professional domestic teams in European competitions. Any connections that were there have long been eroded, Irish fans on the whole support the teams that are doing well hence why we will now see a generation of city fans come through as what happened with Chelsea after their success in the early 00s.

You can support who you want as I said just don't be surprised that NI or the ROI are struggling to beat the likes of Luxemburg etc for the foreseeable future.

For the Highlighted part, you're right I don't know how they could (but they are free to support who they want and I'm sure plenty do). The only club in RL I follow on social media is the longhorns here in Ireland, the most exciting thing for me that happened in club rugby was them getting a chance to play in the CC. 

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1 hour ago, Big Picture said:

Everton is not a suburb, it's within the city of Liverpool and as far as I can tell always has been.  Aston is likewise not a suburb, it's in inner Birmingham according to Wikipedia.  And you'll probably find that the London boroughs have always been considered integral parts of London, not suburbs.

Suburb means a slightly different thing in the UK and North America.

In the UK it is generally an area of the city, whereas in NA I believe it's a close by, separate but dependent settlement.

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2 hours ago, Damien said:

The NRL sympathetic media have buried this since the withdrawal was announced. 

I'm not a big media follower (can't trust them) but from what I have seen in NZ is it's barely news worthy. In this case not a pro-NRL stance but an acceptance of what they've been fed, that's it's too dangerous to go. 

My blog: https://rugbyl.blogspot.co.nz/

It takes wisdom to know when a discussion has run its course.

It takes reasonableness to end that discussion. 

 

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1 hour ago, Big Picture said:

I'm hardly the only person who's noticed that SL doesn't have any Super clubs in it.

Liverpudlians could do what you suggest there, but we both know that very few of them are ever likely to.

Leeds?? - big city team and probably the 2nd biggest RL team in the world behind Brisbane.

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Trying to get a handle on the culture of Australia helps to understand their insular attitude to RL.

The world is moving toward non-fossil fuel cars. Countries are providing generous subsidies and even putting in place dates to ban the sale of ICE vehicles. The uptake has been slow down this way so the NZ government has just implemented incentives. In Australia incentives are decided by each state and efforts to change buying habits hasn't really taken off. Two states decided to tax electric vehicles road user charges rather than give even that tiny incentive. 

The world is changing in moving away from fossil fuels and the take up in Australia barely registers. Vaccine take up is poor too. That insularity is part of how things are over there. Perhaps a local can add to my perception. 

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My blog: https://rugbyl.blogspot.co.nz/

It takes wisdom to know when a discussion has run its course.

It takes reasonableness to end that discussion. 

 

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7 minutes ago, RayCee said:

Trying to get a handle on the culture of Australia helps to understand their insular attitude to RL.

The world is moving toward non-fossil fuel cars. Countries are providing generous subsidies and even putting in place dates to ban the sale of ICE vehicles. The uptake has been slow down this way so the NZ government has just implemented incentives. In Australia incentives are decided by each state and efforts to change buying habits hasn't really taken off. Two states decided to tax electric vehicles road user charges rather than give even that tiny incentive. 

The world is changing in moving away from fossil fuels and the take up in Australia barely registers. Vaccine take up is poor too. That insularity is part of how things are over there. Perhaps a local can add to my perception. 

Agree, I lived in Australia for a few years and loved the place but they have always been behind the rest of the western world by about 10 years in just about every aspect of modern life.

Very insular country and people overall so the WC decision was no surprise.

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3 hours ago, Dave T said:

This simply is not true no matter how many times you say it. 

People support teams in all sports for all sorts of reasons. 

I'm from Warrington in Cheshire, but I support Man City and Lancashire Cricket, despite caring little for the city and county. 

My wife is from Glasgow and supports Warrington. My mate is from Nottingham and supports Arsenal. I know lads from Wales who support Warrington, Widnes, St Helens and Salford. I know Southerners who support Wigan. I have convinced loads of my Scottish mates to follow Wire. 

People support teams for all sorts of reasons - parents, favourite players, friends, kits, one-off games, colours etc. 

 

I began following the North Sydney Bears, even though I grew up in the heart of South Sydney territory, because Norths had a winger (the position I played) with the same surname as me !

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6 hours ago, thebrewxi said:

I'm just watching NRL360. The headlines say "Game Saver - V'Landys scrambles to keep NRL Season Alive" - "Game Saved - NRL Caught Off guard by QLD"

Paul Kent: "It's disgraceful what the Queensland government did....The NRL has come to Queensland' rescue with 25M revenue.... they shut down all professional sport but kept the horse racing which is a cash cow... yet the NRL got shut down last minute, and it took a long, drawn out process of 12 hours to get the games on again (in Queensland, rejigged 24hrs late). Why? they were already in their bubbles?"

Yvonne Sampson: "What's to stop them (QLD) doing this again in Grand Final week?"

 

Do they not see the irony? No one mentioned the world cup once. The word "Hypocrisy" was even mentioned referring to the state government. There was zero opposing view from the Fox a panel (other than Buzz Rothfield saying that they shouldn't now 100% pull the GF from Brisbane, but instead insist on a bidding war with Melbourne).

F^&*ing jokers!

 

I don't know if it's irony or hypocrisy – probably both! – but it is definitely a complete joke, isn't it?

Insular ###### from insular people.

Of course, the fact Fox Sports (I presume) doesn't have the TV rights means the RLWC will be pretty much ignored whether it goes ahead or not

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2 minutes ago, Jim from Oz said:

I began following the North Sydney Bears, even though I grew up in the heart of South Sydney territory, because Norths had a winger (the position I played) with the same surname as me !

Speaking of the Bears, do you happen to know what reason was given for excluding them from the NRL when the number of clubs was cut back?  I've seen a number of old matches played at North Sydney Oval and it looks like it was a great place for an NRL club so their exclusion has me mystified.

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Back on topic,  one group is not being consulted and that is those of us who already have paid for tickets and would be going in normal circumstances. The debate on here, as normal, is being dominated by those who do not go, so to paraphase the RLSA slogan let those who have paid have their say .

As someone who does go to RL international events from the other side of the country for over 27 years and over the years has proved his worth using another hackyneyed RL catchphrase. I am royally $$$$* off that John Dutton can get on Pay TV and state "no we do not have a deadline for this" with under 90 days before the starting date.

FWIW as far as I am concerned it's not a world cup without Australia and New Zealand. That's not defending te NRL decision, but a statement of reality shared no doubt by sponsors and the BBC. I have paid to watch Australia v Scotland not Australia Indigenous or an Aussie Rebel XIII.

If the powerbrokers here want to use the stadiums already booked to give England, Scotland ,Wales, France, Ireland and maybe a Pacific Nations XIII formed from Super League players matches. Great deal me in for England v Greece and England v France which I have tickets for. I would also consider other arranged international matches maybe double headers say England v Scotland, Wales v France in lieu of some of the other matches.

But stop flogging a dead horse and pretending you can run a credible world cup. Let your stateholders know NOW what you intend to do and by that I mean the nations that can put together a side not reliant on NRL players. and the fans who have paid up front.

And before anybody says they are probably doing this now all I will say is that on studying everything coming out from the RLWC organisers it appears to boild down to a binary choice - A "World Cup"  without many of the best players in the world or postponement.

Whatever they decide to do, Get on with it now, so the rest of us can plan what they are doing in October / November.

Rant over

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4 minutes ago, THE RED ROOSTER said:

Back on topic,  one group is not being consulted and that is those of us who already have paid for tickets and would be going in normal circumstances. The debate on here, as normal, is being dominated by those who do not go, so to paraphase the RLSA slogan let those who have paid have their say .

As someone who does go to RL international events from the other side of the country for over 27 years and over the years has proved his worth using another hackyneyed RL catchphrase. I am royally $$$$* off that John Dutton can get on Pay TV and state "no we do not have a deadline for this" with under 90 days before the starting date.

FWIW as far as I am concerned it's not a world cup without Australia and New Zealand. That's not defending te NRL decision, but a statement of reality shared no doubt by sponsors and the BBC. I have paid to watch Australia v Scotland not Australia Indigenous or an Aussie Rebel XIII.

If the powerbrokers here want to use the stadiums already booked to give England, Scotland ,Wales, France, Ireland and maybe a Pacific Nations XIII formed from Super League players matches. Great deal me in for England v Greece and England v France which I have tickets for. I would also consider other arranged international matches maybe double headers say England v Scotland, Wales v France in lieu of some of the other matches.

But stop flogging a dead horse and pretending you can run a credible world cup. Let your stateholders know NOW what you intend to do and by that I mean the nations that can put together a side not reliant on NRL players. and the fans who have paid up front.

And before anybody says they are probably doing this now all I will say is that on studying everything coming out from the RLWC organisers it appears to boild down to a binary choice - A "World Cup"  without many of the best players in the world or postponement.

Whatever they decide to do, Get on with it now, so the rest of us can plan what they are doing in October / November.

Rant over

I don't agree with all you say but the delay in a decision is frustrating. The organisers will say it's best not to rush a decision to get the best result and I get that. But for people who have bought tickets or contemplating doing so, the lack of certainty is problematic. Whether it ultimately puts people off altogether I'm unsure.

However, I'd go to a game with a replacement team to Australia because to do otherwise is to agree that RL is Australia. They say there can't be a WC without us and you agree. Hand the reigns over to Australia now. Let's capitulate. 

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My blog: https://rugbyl.blogspot.co.nz/

It takes wisdom to know when a discussion has run its course.

It takes reasonableness to end that discussion. 

 

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3 hours ago, The Hallucinating Goose said:

We aren't a coal mining town along the M62, we're a fishing port city at the end of the M62. 

But in the main the sport was rooted in coal mining towns. I know I’m referring back to Tony Collins on this but he says this connection is unique. Having such a strong connection with these coal mining communities have both helped and hindered the sport in that RL will always part of the fabric/culture of these towns which in turn makes it more inaccessible for outsiders. 

3 hours ago, Big Picture said:

That's why anyone backing a new club or franchise there would have to give them a reason to care about it.  That's as true in Manchester as it is in London or anywhere else where the game is unknown to most and looked down on by most of the remainder.

I think this “unknown” claim is a myth. Ask scousers (especially anyone who follows sport) if they know about rugby league I’d expect 99% will say yes. Radio Merseyside has a RL show so it’s not as if they are blind to it. There’s no connection to RL in the city, a sport culturally tied to another location. 

3 hours ago, Big Picture said:

Are you talking about Everton there?  According to Wikipedia Everton is a district in Liverpool, Goodison Park is only 3 km from Liverpool city centre and Everton moved there from Anfield.  That certainly makes Everton a Liverpool team and thus it's entirely acceptable to Liverpudlians.  The difference between them and St Helens is like night and day.

I wasn't disputing that, but I note none of the examples you gave is residents of a big city supporting a team based in and carrying the name of one of it's suburbs, though I grant that could happen if some of those city dwellers have a personal connection of some sort to it.  There won't be too many in that category though.

Wouldn’t go about calling Everton fans “Liverpudlians” (even though being from the city they are) as the term in a sporting context infers being a supporter of the major club in the city.

I think everything you write about in regards to supporting city teams is only relevant outside the UK. I’ve yet to see any evidence that a team with Liverpool in its name, or Manchester, or London will do anything to shift the dial here, outside it may well be a different story. The sport has been in existence for 125 years and it’s parochial identity has almost been set in stone here. Good luck trying to shift that. The waves that were made in Toronto for the club game exceeded anything seen here so the answer may well be outside the UK...that and internationals as a few previous posters mentioned (which again explains the annoyance over the Aussies/Kiwis pulling out)

2 hours ago, gingerjon said:

They are well supported clubs named after the suburbs of the big cities in which they are located.

So, to be fair, it appears you’re talking absolute cobblers.

He’s definitely from Canada as opposed to an ex pat in Canada. Alot of wishy washy stuff that simply doesn’t relate to the sporting landscape here, though It’s always good to have an outside take on things.

2 hours ago, Big Picture said:

Everton is not a suburb, it's within the city of Liverpool and as far as I can tell always has been.  Aston is likewise not a suburb, it's in inner Birmingham according to Wikipedia.  And you'll probably find that the London boroughs have always been considered integral parts of London, not suburbs.

In any case all those clubs were established in a different era than the one we live in now, and attitudes have changed since those days.  Are Man U or Man City fans going to get excited about their team playing Blackburn, Bolton or Preston like they will about them playing Liverpool, Spurs or Arsenal?  I think we both know that's unlikely.

When Blackburn were good, yeah. The location really doesn’t matter if the team is good. Blackburn vs Manchester United were “top of the table” clashes for a few seasons. A couple of years ago Castleford were heavyweights in RL, yet there are maybe half a dozen bigger locations in RL. 

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58 minutes ago, RayCee said:

I'm not a big media follower (can't trust them) but from what I have seen in NZ is it's barely news worthy. In this case not a pro-NRL stance but an acceptance of what they've been fed, that's it's too dangerous to go. 

Quite possibly. 

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57 minutes ago, RayCee said:

I'm not a big media follower (can't trust them) but from what I have seen in NZ is it's barely news worthy. In this case not a pro-NRL stance but an acceptance of what they've been fed, that's it's too dangerous to go. 

Which is completely stupid 

Much was made in the UK of NZs PM's handling of the pandemic , mostly by people who have never visited Aotearoa , or who genuinely don't know exactly where it is , not understanding that nobody goes through NZ , you only go to and from it , so isolating it is relatively easy 

But the efforts at vaccinating the population is very poor , you cannot isolate forever , vaccination is the only long term solution , so if not right now , very soon it will be a whole lot safer here , than there , this also applies to our other ' friends ' in the bigger place 

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  • John Drake changed the title to Rugby League World Cup 2021 (Merged Threads)
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