It began in February 2022, or at least that was the starting point of our story. It could be said that perhaps the ideas were set in motion sooner, but for us, it began in Feb 2022.

I’ll start the story with the classic Star Wars rip off…

A long time ago, in a League far, far away…

It began with Leeds United, a footballing side with lots of history but in recent times, had fallen on hard times. Owners, managers, skint Arabs, liquidations, you name it , Leeds had done it. The scale of the tumultuous fall from Grace, was forever known as “Doing A  Leeds”.

Then a little known manager arrived on the banks of the River Aire from, of all places, Argentina. Not the massive footballing nation of the U S of A, from the smaller, less significant continent of South America.

The football was different and  like a breath of fresh air, Leeds United  breathed life into a stagnant EPL. Soon, both players and pundits, managers and fans and the all important True Gods of Football, became transfixed in what later came known as Bielsaball. Leeds United once again, rose from the devastation of 17 long years away from Top Flight football, and were reborn.

But, despite the awakening of the Forgotten Giant with fancy footwork and quality football, it was just not good enough to increase the Global brand of the “magnificient new” Leeds United. The football on the pitch was good, but it’s global presence was still in it’s infancy. The potential was there, but it was hampered by it’s marketability.

The new American investment in Leeds United, by the 49ers, was part of a second attempt at a USA foray into the EPL. This time, it’s mission was to build back better. After the last couple of minor incursions by the Glazers of Man Utd and the Hicks and Gillet double act at Livarpool hadn’t really scored them many points, The Americans dabbling in the English football game had to get better. When the Henry dynasty of FSG, along with Lebron James, managed to finally get a better footing on Merseyside, with the help of Gurning Klopp, Uncle Sam’s foot was firmly wedge in the door.

With the Kroenke family at Arsenal, the Edens at Villa, Clearlake at Chelski, the two part owners at Fulham and Palace and lastly the guy who bought Bournemouth, there were now 9 PL clubs owned / part owned by USA groups or sporting partnerships. Cue the Welsh assault, by the albeit Canadian born, but now dual registered, Ryan Reynolds and lo and behold, in Feb 2022, the English football league was well within the bounds of the “Special Relationship”.

Back to Leeds United in February 2022.

The global brand seriously needed a kick start at this club. Luckily, despite having a decent first season in the PL, Leeds United were mightily suffering with injuries, and a change of manager could be the catalyst for change. Bielsa had good footballing knowledge on the pitch, but knew very little about the corporate side of things, off the pitch. He didn’t like doing interviews, and the only social media presence was just of him with fans taking selfies. He didn’t really like the players to be distracted by off field activities, so promotion of the “Global brand” was not his forte.

Perfect. Dispose of Bielsa and install someone who really knew how to market the brand. The Bielsa audience was dull. Realistically, he could only engage with the South American continent. Hardly a massive football history there then! Inconsequential, as there would be no market there to engage with. Saturation point was selfishly with their own teams, River plate – what sort of a name is that?

In February 2022, Leeds United were in midtable with 12 games to go. With all their injured players imminently due to return, and with a reasonably easy run in to the end of the season, European football was easily within their grasp. The ideal time to bring in a Champions League manager to guide them into European Glory? Cue the contenders from the Champions League managers list. Javi Munoz from Lincoln Imps FC? David Healy from Linfield FC? Stephen Bradley at Shamrock Rovers. The guy from Rangers FC? Jaissle from Salzburg?

How incredibly lucky that Jessie wanted out of RB Leipzig. And how lucky for Leipzig he did as they are 4th in the Bundesliga at Feb 2023. He was a much better fit and happy in front of the camera, with soundbytes a plenty. Plus the players all loved him at Leeds, who could forget his quote:

Nobody would care that Bielsa was unceremoniously ditched, because the rumours about him losing the dressing room were rife, and plenty of senior players were complaining about him already. The last game of the season came and went, with a thrilling end with Leeds United avoiding relegation and it made great TV on the day. Yes, Phillips and Raphinha were obviously never going to play in a Leeds shirt again, but the money they brought in meant a bumper BIG money signing session was imminent.

The dissenting Bielsa lovers would be shouted down by the fans who got the big money signings that they craved in the summer. The added bonus was that the Bielsa legacy players would be replaced by American players. Cementing further the influence of Stars and Stripes Soccer in the English game.

The start of the 2022-23 season was as good as it could have been, with results against Wolves and Chelsea ensuring that American Boi was sung from the stands. The American dream was complete. The next bonus was the success of the USMNT – cowabunga!

(no, not them!) in the Slavery world Cup.

The USMNT fared considerably better than the silenced German team and most of the other big National sides like Belgium and Uruguay.

The plan that started Feb 2022, was making headway and everything was going to plan. The global brand of Leeds United was growing and more and more high profile Americans were making their way across the pond.

The success of the USMNT ensured that promotion of Stars and Stripes Soccer was kept relevant, and with the return of the likes of Pusilic and the Leeds United midfield mastery, there was no fear that the American dream would be fading.

February 2022, was the beginning.

Now, in February 2032, it is all going swell.

The influence of our American owners and managers have meant that all that relegation rubbish that used to happen in the old EPL disappeared by 2027. We never understood the need for all that promotion and relegation business. There wasn’t the need for it in NFL, NBA, MLS and MLB. As we proved, if we didn’t have a need for it in the US, why did anywhere else need it?

And we established the ESL by 2025 easily. All the other big clubs in Europe were more than happy to just play each other all the time and not bother with home country Cup competitions. The Copa Del Rey and FA Cup in England were small fry and not necessary for our global success. Who needs the likes of Brentford, Nottingham and Sheffield.

Barca and Real were in it from Day One and these legacy fans of the “old leagues” were quickly removed from the scene by digital ticketing and dynamic pricing. Pricing out these match attending fans was easy, they were never necessary once we got the stadiums all rebuilt by the guys that did so well in Qatar. The acoustics in them meant that the sound could be artificially generated so it sounder great on TV. The TV money was the plentiful with everyone made to pay per view each game using the special ESL World Wide Channel.

The money from corporate packages alone at the start of the ESL made billions, and the smaller clubs were easily pushed out by the larger franchises. The national leagues in Europe have been whittled down to 10 teams per Red Bull League in each of the Eastern and Western conferences. Luckily all the EPL franchises in the UK are now based in London, which makes it easier to travel to and from the games in the 3 games per week corporate packages.

By 2027, the World League was formed with the Galaxy and DC United being the inaugural members of the League. And with all the major franchises agreeing to play on the the countries capital cities, London, Paris, Madrid, Munich etc. the travelling carbon offsets are easily manipulated to ensure our zero carbon footprint is maintained.

The fans just all watch in the fan parks now, where we can charge them overpriced food and drink, on top of their ticket price. We control every match attending fan ensuring that only the “right” fans get into these games.

Leeds United? Now Red Bull United. It amalgamated with Manchester United in 2025 and with all their London based followers, it seemed the best thing to do was franchise the Manchester United, Leeds United and West Ham United teams together. They play at the London United stadium now.

And to think, it all began in February 2022