Something just doesn't smell right in the football world at the moment.
I've just been reading how Team A, a team that has steadily climbed up the pyramid, has had to ask the Southern League not to promote them next season. The reason, it seems, is down to the amount of extra costs they would face in the Premier League. Presumably, most of this would be extra travel costs. I'm not a money expert but, I would say that the extra funding required for a team to move from the Southern League South & West into the Southern Premier is not going to run into the millions, or the hundreds of thousands. Maybe tens of thousands?
Let's contrast and compare this with Team B, a Premier League team that has completely under-performed for at least three seasons, culminating in their relegation this year. Even by their own supporters admission they have been very poor. Their 'penalty' for being relegated? Around about £65,000,000 of income.
Don't get me wrong. I am not suggesting for one minute that Team A deserve to be raking in as much as a Premier League or Championship team.
However, and call me old-fashioned, I still view football as a sport, an entertainment, an escape for your average Joe. Those people who pay, every week, to watch this entertainment are supporters. Not customers. Not clients. Supporters. They support their clubs. The clue is in the word.
My argument, based on this, would be that, whatever the level of football, it should be about the enjoyment that these teams bring to their supporters. It doesn't matter how many of these supporters there are. Team A have brought joy to their supporters this season. Never before, in almost 100 years, has this club had the opportunity to play at this level of the pyramid. This has been taken away from them for the sake of few quid, equal to the amount of interest Team B have 'earned' on their failure reward in the time it has taken to write this article.
Non-league football doesn't want the millions that the professional game has. It just wants a fair deal. At the moment, it does not get one in my opinion.