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Russell Crowe, Leeds United And How Ownership Can Change A Team's Fortunes

Last month a desperate Leeds United fan, sick of seeing his side lose and lose and lose, tweeted at Russell Crowe, asking the Australian actor to please step in and buy the club. Crowe, a desperate Leeds United fan, sick of seeing the side lose, did not say no.

@Samwild90: @russellcrowe please buy leeds. In need of help!!” Anybody else think this is a good idea?

— Russell Crowe (@russellcrowe) February 25, 2015

Then, in a recent interview, he continued to not say no.

“I wouldn’t want to put any pressure or anything on that administration, but you know that love for the club and the desire for the club to be successful is just not going to go away,” Crowe told the BBC.

Crowe, who adopted Leeds United as his team through watching “game of the week” matches while growing up in Australia, actually has a history of buying up his favorite sports teams. He owns the South Sydney Rabbitohs, an Australian rugby squad.

Leeds has had some good years, predominantly in the 60s and 70s, but right now its stuck in the Championship, with no real advancement prospects (last year they finished 15th). It’s governed by current owner Massimo Cellino, a.k.a. “the Manager Eater,” who is by all accounts a lunatic, so Leeds fans have a legitimate reason to want new ownership.

Leeds’s plight is a familiar one. The squad sucks, and the only real hope for the future is for a rich owner (Russell Crowe, for example) to buy the club, pour money into it and hope that money translates into wins.

You might think this strategy is stupid, and nearly hopeless, but it’s kind of the only one that works. Manchester City sucked until it was taken over by the Abu Dhabi United Group, which used its massive cash reserves to turn a perennial afterthought into the clear second-best team in the Premier League.

Manchester City is second only to Chelsea, who’s Russian oil baron owner Roman Abramovich will do whatever it takes to win, no matter who he has to outspend. Scared money don’t make money, and Abramovich’s money is the Liam Neeson of money. Russell Crowe, as far as I know, is not a billionaire, but he is a famous actor, and every little bit counts.

So, if you are a fan of a team that doesn’t have a billionaire owner with zero concern for profit margin but a whole lot of concern for victory margin, the only way your team is ever going to win anything is if they get one, which is kind of sad, I guess.

To end on a happier note, how great would Russell Crowe be if he took over a football club? I can picture him standing in the center circle after big wins yelling “ARE YOU NOT ENTERTAINED!?” at Leeds fans. And they would probably love it, provided he doesn’t chuck a sword at them.

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