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Pre - Play off Rant

By Mike Cox13/5/2015 21:24Wed May 13 21:24:10 2015

Views: 3304

Lest I be accused of sour grapes should the unthinkable happen and Hendon do not win through, I must state that I think the play-off system can be a totally unfair way of deciding promotion places. This season for example the team finishing 5th with 20 points less than the runners up can go up as a result of a couple of excellent or fluky performances at season's end. The old system whereby the 2 best teams over the full season go up is surely the only fair and proper way of deciding things.
Irrespective of whatever happens tomorrow (weather permitting) and in the final, let's be ultra proud of our team who have treated us to the most successful season for over 40 years.

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Re: Pre - Play off Rant

By Pol Pot13/5/2015 21:42Wed May 13 21:42:16 2015In response to Pre - Play off RantTop of thread

Views: 3262

You're right. In fact I would say having play-offs in non-league makes no sense. I can understand it in the pro game because there is the lure of a Wembley final and extra TV coverage. But at our level the argument that the play-offs are lucrative is not true. The league take 25 per cent of gate money and the rest is split 37.5 per cent to each club. So, if you are at home, you need to treble your normal attendance just to match what you normally take through the turnstiles. Does having play-offs boost interest in the regular season? I see little evidence of that.

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My Pre-Playoff Rant

By David B14/5/2015 13:29Thu May 14 13:29:46 2015In response to Re: Pre - Play off RantTop of thread

Views: 3394

I have to agree about the playoffs and I have always held this opinion. The bottom line is that playoffs reward mediocrity at the expense of quality – a bit like a school sports day when there are no winners and everyone gets a prize. The bottom line in sport is that winning matters.

Of course, competing is important (as Baron de Coubertin said), but did Eric Moussambani deserve a medal when his time in the 100m freestyle at the 2000 Olympic Games was more than 50 seconds slower than the nearest competitor and more than 64 seconds slower than the 48.64 recorded by the fastest qualifier? Of course not. He might have been a hero but he did not deserve a place in the next round. If you finish third in the table and two teams go up, you don’t deserve promotion. Tables rarely lie and the best teams get the most points. Why should they then have to go through the lottery of losing everything because of one off-day?

Maybe if the playoffs were handicapped so that the better team gets a material advantage – and playing at home is nowhere near sufficient – it would be more palatable. In a one-off match, one score for every four or five points difference in the table would be reasonable, or maybe one score for every extra win or fewer losses achieved. In 2011 Dulwich finished 31 points behind Bognor (10 wins, 11 defeats worse) and won 3–1 at Nyewood Lane. OK, I realise that a six-goal start in a one-off game makes it utterly uncompetitive, but nine months of hard work for the Sussex club counted for almost nothing over one 90-minute match.

The only time a playoff (involving only teams at the top of a table – or those only at the bottom) makes any degree of sense is if not every team has an identical schedule, i.e. one, two or four games against every opponent in the division. Rugby Union’s Aviva Premiership playoff – after the 12 teams have played 11 home and 11 away games – is senseless. The best team after 22 games is the champion, irrespective of whether the difference between first and second is one point or 21 points, end of story.

American sport – and Rugby League – is different because not every team has the same schedule. When the Rugby League Super League Magic Weekend is played on 30/31 May, Castleford will have the benefit of the – on-paper – easiest fixture, against Wakefield, whereas Wigan will have the toughest against Leeds. Therefore, the 12 teams will play 23 League games, with a different team played 3 times.

My only other concession, and this going back to winning games being the only really important factor, is that when teams are level on points, I accept a playoff – only between those on that points-total – can be acceptable.

We finished this season 20 ahead of Met Police, Thurrock were 19 behind Harlow Town and Folkestone had 17 points in hand on Whyteleafe and 15 on Merstham in fourth. Both Harlow and Folkestone missed out on promotion; I desperately hope Hendon don’t complete a hat-trick.

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Re: My Pre-Playoff Rant

By geemickey15/5/2015 11:31Fri May 15 11:31:38 2015In response to My Pre-Playoff RantTop of thread

Views: 3101

The current system clearly does not give enough advantage to reward the team finishing second.
I'm a Chesham fan and have posted this suggestion for a review of the playoff system on their forum

I have also written to the FA (Greg Dyke) suggesting it is time to review Play-off system. Bet the idea goes nowhere !

I'd like to see the Southern League pioneer a fairer play-off system as follows :

5th plays 4th.
Winners of that tie play 3rd.
Winners of that tie play 2nd.

Two points to make :

1. This would involve the same number of play-off matches

2. Each play-off team would face a challenge related to it's final league position
- i.e there would be a benefit in finishing 2nd in terms of fatigue and having to play only one play-off game.
The teams finishing 5th & 4th would have a tougher route to promotion via three games. 3rd team still face two games etc.

There would be the added benefit that the 2nd & 3rd teams could plan for and promote their games properly, knowing they will be involved.

Do others have views ?

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Re: My Pre-Playoff Rant

By Pol Pot15/5/2015 14:22Fri May 15 14:22:57 2015In response to Re: My Pre-Playoff RantTop of thread

Views: 3005

Yes, don't have play-offs. As my post explained, they don't provide a cash windfall at this level. And, as David explained, they are unfair. So in the Ryman Prem just promote the top two teams. End of.

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Re: My Pre-Playoff Rant

By geemickey15/5/2015 14:39Fri May 15 14:39:02 2015In response to Re: My Pre-Playoff RantTop of thread

Views: 3008

Scrapping the playoffs would kill the season by January for half the clubs in each league.

Competition for playoff places increases interests and crowds.

The challenge is how to advantage the second placed club - my suggestion addresses that.

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Re: My Pre-Playoff Rant

By Hendonboy15/5/2015 22:14Fri May 15 22:14:21 2015In response to Re: My Pre-Playoff RantTop of thread

Views: 2819

I actually agree with more or less everything posted above. From a natural justice and sporting point of view, there's never been any justification for promotion playoffs at the end of a standard league season.

With that said, given that we know the rules every season before we start (pending FA disciplinary processes) it feels a bit churlish to complain about them, especially since they've kept our interest in the league season going for quite a bit longer than usual in recent seasons, not least 2011/2 where we still had something to play for on the final day despite having been comfortably out of the race for the top two spots for quite some time.

Should there be more of an advantage to the second place club? Perhaps, but as playoffs are more or less a given these days I think I personally prefer a pure 4 way cup competition to settle things, even if we might feel hard done by if Margate beat us on Sunday.

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Re: My Pre-Playoff Rant

By Shots Away16/5/2015 20:59Sat May 16 20:59:31 2015In response to Re: My Pre-Playoff RantTop of thread

Views: 2855

Hi, I've recently been following the recent Isthmian / FA shambles by taking a look at affected club websites and couldn't resist adding my thoughts to this topic.

I think that the play-off are good to the extent they keep the season interesting for much longer for many teams but I have never understood why there should be penalties at the end if the game is drawn. It would seem more sensible to me that the lower team must beat the higher team to progress, if drawn the advantage should go to the higher placed team.

And to add a little bit of further advantage to 2nd over 5th, that game should end after 90 minutes, while 3rd against 4th has extra time before the higher team progresses. Extra time also in the final. But never have any play-off decided by penalties, which does completely turn a seasons work into a lottery.

Good luck in your final, although I do have a bit of bias in favour of your opponents as I have very fond memories of their excellent management team and goal-keeper. I may have come along to the final on the originally scheduled date but now it clashes with another play-off final and I will be at Wembley to see that one.

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Re: My Pre-Playoff Rant

By Pink Panther17/5/2015 11:22Sun May 17 11:22:37 2015In response to Re: My Pre-Playoff RantTop of thread

Views: 2790

I like the suggestions of no extra time for 2nd v 5th, and no penalty shoot-out with the higher placed team being declared the winner. I'd never thought of any of that before.

I've always been against play-offs in principle, but realistically they're here to stay now and I've just accepted the fact that you have to be champions to guarantee promotion, while anything else is a bonus not a right. As a Dulwich supporter, I've seen my club reach the play-offs three times: beaten finalists in D1S twice and losing semi-finalists this season. We've only ever lost to sides who finished above us anyway, so I've never really been that upset. (In 2003/4 we lost a unique cross-divisional play-off on sudden death penalties at home to Wealdstone when there was only one spare place between the two regional divisions upon the creation of the regional Conference divisions.)

One thing I just can't accept was the decision to expand our division to 24 clubs a couple of years back. By definition this creates two extra mid-table sides with 'nothing to play for' towards the season's end in direct contradiction to the play-offs argument, four additional midweek league fixtures when attendances are always significantly down for all clubs on what the same fixture would pull on a Saturday, and everyone having an extra four fixtures against two clubs that wouldn't previously have been good enough for this level. It's just promoting mediocrity in every sense. This season eleven Premier Division clubs had at least one attendance of 150 or less, and six had a sub-100 attendance. To my mind it would be preferable to cut divisions to 20 clubs, revert to starting the seson on the third Saturday of August instead of the second, and leave midweek dates free for cup ties and rescheduled matches after the first few weeks.

Nikki Bull is still a fine goalkeeper. Best I've seen this season.

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