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Chelsea's Todd Boehly Floats Idea of Future Premier League All-Star Game

Timothy Rapp@@TRappaRTFeatured Columnist IVSeptember 13, 2022

Harriet Lander - Chelsea FC/Chelsea FC via Getty Images

New Chelsea owner Todd Boehly made the argument Tuesday that the Premier League should copy a staple of American sporting leagues and add an all-star game to its season while speaking at the SALT Conference in New York.

"Ultimately I hope that the Premier League takes a little bit of a lesson from American sports and really starts to figure out why wouldn't we do a tournament with the bottom four teams, why isn't there an all-star game?" he said, per ESPN.

"People are talking about more money for the pyramid—MLB did their All-Star Game in L.A. this year—we made $200 million from a Monday and a Tuesday. You could do a north versus south all-star game for the Premier League to fund whatever the [British soccer] pyramid needed very easily."

Men in Blazers @MenInBlazers

Chelsea owner Todd Boehly floats the idea of a PREMIER LEAGUE ALL-STAR GAME. <br><br>🎥 <a href="https://twitter.com/SALTConference?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@SALTConference</a> <a href="https://t.co/qeV2wQsWrQ">pic.twitter.com/qeV2wQsWrQ</a>

The financial component of such an event is an easy enough sell. And introducing an all-star game—assuming it's not interrupting clubs' packed midseason schedules—would be an innocuous addition to the Premier League's calendar, given it's ultimately a meaningless exhibition and a bit of fun.

But the Premier League also has its own traditions and culture, and for football supporters in England already wary of the growing American influence in ownership circles throughout the league, Boehly's suggestion may be seen as yet another unwanted cultural shift pushed by forces across the Atlantic.

Men in Blazers @MenInBlazers

Boehly bought Chelsea just to institute Premier League Dunk Contest 🤷‍♂️<a href="https://t.co/md8TkJTJnD">https://t.co/md8TkJTJnD</a>

James Olley @JamesOlley

Klopp taken aback by Boehly suggestion of north/south PL game, put to him by <a href="https://twitter.com/SamWallaceTel?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@SamWallaceTel</a>. “He [Boehly] doesn’t wait long. Great. When he finds a date for that, he can call me... Does he want to bring the Harlem Globetrotters as well and let them play against a football team?"

"Everyone likes the idea of more revenue for the league," Boehly said when asked how the other club owners around England felt about the idea. "I think there's a real cultural aspect, I think evolution will come."

He isn't the only figure with a history in English football to suggest such an exhibition, however. In 2018, former Everton, Manchester United and Chelsea striker Romelu Lukaku—now with Inter Milan on loan from Chelsea—proposed a similar idea.

"Here's an idea for you guys," he tweeted at the time. "The NBA has All-Star Game! Don't you guys think we should organise one in the Premier League. The north vs the south! And the fans vote... what do you guys think?"

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