It's time for a British league
Right, this is going to hurt. English rugby is the hotbed of the game in the northern hemisphere. Ouch. Help! Nurse...!
I say again, I want a British league.
And the reason? Promotion and relegation. It's a real league. If players lose games they lose their jobs.
I have written articles about how English club rugby is stodgy but, just like its soccer counterpart, the English league is becoming the best in the world.
I watched that Leicester v Saracens game at the weekend and my jaw was dropping to the floor. It was confrontational, tactical, abrasive and oh-so-good to watch. The best game for a while.
Premiership winners Leicester celebrate their third title in four years. Photo: Getty.
You won't know this but the Leicester boss Richard Cockerill was kind to me last summer when I was looking for tactics to employ as coach of West of Scotland in our shamateur Premiership in Scotland.
I got his mobile, spoke to him a few times, and he gave me some pointers as to how they play and how they train.
His players are highly trained, highly motivated, and in it to win it. It's all about winning.
And I guess part of what binds English rugby clubs is that they know that if they don't succeed they go down.
Can you imagine the real fear for coaches, players and administrators as they contemplate losing their jobs? Can you imagine what it must have been, week in and week out, to be Worcester? Played 22, won 3, demoted.
Contrast that with the Magners League. Ostensibly Munster, Leinster and the Ospreys could argue to be "better" than many English teams and they have their pride, but I don't think that the Magners League provides the same test every week.
Glasgow and Edinburgh, my primary interest, are not hammered every week. There isn't the same fear factor. Players don't have to win to the same extent.
In the Magners League, it's Connacht: played 18, won 5, not relegated.
There are Irish, Welsh and Scottish clubs that would light up a British league. A real league needs promotion and relegation. Magners League rugby is "prettier" but it's not as pressurised.
I want all of our teams to be involved in promotion and relegation. Nurse, I want to be British! Help! Nurse...!