S:     I was watching the FIFA World Cup final again the other day, and I noticed something I missed the first time. When they bring the trophy out to unveil it to the crowd, it was bought in a Louis Vuitton box, with the same distinctive pattern. I thought ‘what does Louis Vuitton have to do with football’? The answer is: nothing. It was just there to capitalize on the fact that the World Cup has become the biggest event in the world, the most extensively watched show ever. It was all just advertising, all a money game.

A:     You say it like it’s a bad thing. They probably paid tons of cash to FIFA to have their box up there, it’s called sponsorship. The FIFA gets to use the money to make the event better and Louis Vuitton gets to advertise, win-win situation if you ask me.

S:     It’s not win-win, it is a profitable deal, yes, but such a culture where sport is being used primarily as a way to sell products and make money is detrimental. Everything is monetised now, players get paid to wear certain shirts to certain events, drive certain cars and wear certain shoes. Tiger Woods gets paid millions to wear a Nike tick on his cap. This is all too much. It distracts sportsmen, it skews focus. Ticket prices go up, television men decide match schedules now, and the spectator is all but forgotten. Sport should be what it used to be.

A:     What would that be? Unfit old men playing in the local playground? Without this money how would you have been able to watch the World Cup sitting halfway across the world? This money makes stadiums, it makes training academies. This money trickles down to the people. Furthermore, without such a cut-throat, capitalist model of sport, no one would have pushed themselves as hard as they do now, without money, there would be no Ronaldo, no Messi.