Right Field

Rioting Affects EPL Opening Weekend

With England literally burning and riots in various cities — from London to Manchester to Birmingham to Liverpool — matches scheduled for the EPL 2011-2012 season opening weekend may be postponed. Already, the international friendly scheduled for tonight between England and Holland was canceled yesterday. Matches affected include the London games Tottenham vs. Everton (it was in Tottenham that the riots began), Fulham vs. Aston, and Queens Park Rangers vs. Bolton. Tottenham players have gone further and even called for their opening match to be postponed. If matches are postponed, an already crowded soccer schedule will only get worse. The Metropolitan Police has said it cannot supply the police needed at these matches.

Even players and other athletes — many of them known for their sometimes thoughtless tweets — have taken to calling for a stop to the riots on Twitter. Players include Manchester United’s Wayne Rooney, Rio Ferdinand, and Michael Owen; Newcastle United’s Joey Barton; Arsenal’s Cesc Fabregas; and other athletes from various sports, including English tennis player Andy Murray. 

For an interesting take on the whole situation, writer Rory Smith, who confesses to being a liberal, considers the failure of the liberal state as a whole.

Obviously, safety is more important than any soccer match. But it is an utter shame. 

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