If you witnessed this weekend’s exciting FA Cup action you might become a believer in a complete retool of the English Premier League season.
The excitement and buzz surrounding both Saturday’s high-scoring semi-final with Chelsea prevailing 4-2 over Spurs or Sundays equally exciting battle extra time victory by Arsenal over City are proof a playoff format needs to be adopted.
Leave the FA Cup alone but a playoff plan for the EPL would boost fan interest and make the regular season more exciting. Such retooling would go something like this:
1.) End the regular season in early April and drop the number of regular season games by 5 to 10 games.
2.) Declare a League Champion but have the top six teams playoff for a League Cup trophy. They would play in a four-team preliminary round with the top two teams in the league standing receiving semi-final byes. All the matchups would be two legs with a one-off final at Wembley in mid May. Abandon the current League Cup tournament.
3.) Award the League Cup to the Champion of the playoffs.
The excitement that plays out every year in the second rung League Championship is a working model that proved interest would be elevated. The only thing greedy EPL club owners would need to get over is the loss of a few home games.
The benefit a more meaningful season, better quality football from better rested footballers. In the end they would stand to make more money with all of the rebranding and merchandising rights. But because of this overriding greed factor I seriously doubt they would have the balls or foresight to do it.