If you’ve been around football for long enough, you’ll have heard someone say: “The Premier League is the toughest league in the world.” It’s one of those sentiments that gets thrown around a lot. But does it have any weight to it? Here are seven reasons why the Premier League is the toughest.
Premier League clubs’ financial power
One of the biggest reasons why the Premier League is so competitive is the financial power of the top teams. With Manchester United, Liverpool, Manchester City, Chelsea, Tottenham and Arsenal all making it into the 11 richest teams in the world, it’s no surprise there are so many big names in the Premier League. No other league can compete with the combined spending power of the clubs, which makes the Premier League the hardest trophy to win.
Biggest TV viewership
The Premier League also has the biggest TV viewership. More people watch the Premier League than any other football league in the world. Make one mistake, and it becomes worldwide news. Fail to perform for your club, and your reputation will be ruined. With millions of fans attending games, watching them on TV and placing bets on games, there is a huge amount of pressure and scrutiny on the players and managers.
The Premier League is regarded as one of the most physically demanding leagues in the world. The players are stronger, they make harder tackles and they have to run further. Add to that the sheer number of games that players play in a single year, and you have a recipe for fatigue and injury.
England’s weather is infamous. The freezing cold winters, the torrential rain and the muddy pitches all make life difficult for a footballer. Nowadays, Premier League pitches are so well looked after that it doesn’t make as much of a difference. But it still requires a mental toughness that some players just don’t have.
No winter break
Most of Europe’s football leagues have a winter break, giving the players a chance to rest and recover. That isn’t the case in the Premier League. They play right through Christmas and into January and February. This means that Premier League players need a higher level of fitness and mental fortitude to make it through to the end of the season.
The ‘big six’
In the Premier League, there are six top-tier clubs – Manchester United, Liverpool, Manchester City, Chelsea, Tottenham and Arsenal. Compare that to three top-tier clubs in La Liga and two top-tier clubs in the Bundesliga, and you start to get the idea. Sure, the Premier League might not be home to the best club sides in the world, but the level of competition is much higher.
Impressive mid-level clubs
Another impressive thing about the Premier League is the quality of the mid-level clubs. In the 2015-16 season, Leicester City F.C. managed to steal the title from the bigger clubs with an amazing run of form. This just shows the overall quality in the Premier League.