On the field you are moving to a system where the manager becomes less and less important. You have a large staff consisting of specialists, especially physical specialists and data analysts and increasingly they will do the work of scouting and picking the team. You might even have someone giving the five minutes talk before kick-off who isn’t the manager. There will be more and more of those kind of things and the manager will just be a supervisor of the process. Because the physical side gets more and more sophisticated, what you are seeing is just that the physical performance of players – the number of sprints they do and so on – gets better and better.
I would expect the large non-European countries to develop really serious leagues, currently you would see that led by China. Then Chinese, American and Japanese champions, maybe the Gulf champions, playing in an enlarged Champions League. Then the Champions League would get larger television revenues from the U.S and China. Imagine if the Seattle Sounders were in the Champions League?
The other thing is that we will be able to watch games through Virtual Reality which will be an incredibly intense and exhilarating experience, mainly appealing to younger people. Already you could mount a camera on Messi’s forehead and you could experience a whole game at Barcelona viewed from Messi’s eyes or you could switch to that whenever you wanted and then switch to the Manuel Neuer camera or you could just let the TV do that for you. So you will really feel that you are standing on the field. This will become unparalleled entertainment – almost too exciting to bear in some cases.
One of the problems with football is that, as I read recently, people like everything about football except watching it. Virtual Reality should overcome that.