ABOUT ten years ago just as The FA Premier League was ordering ermine-clad boots as it sashayed through another mega television rights deal, myself and a fellow Liverpool fan were speculating just when the bubble would burst.

In deference to Stephen Hawking, our Theory of Everything Football was that the then stellar salaries being dished out in the mid-noughties just could not continue.

Television revenue was approaching £1 million per game, some top players were earning the sort of sums each week that your average fan would struggle to recoup over four years.

Our conviction was that English football, which by then had usurped most of Europe for earning potential, just could not go on with escalating wages and multi-million payments to agents. I mean that latter drain was just magnetising cash out of the sport never to be seen again.

Mine and Frank’s combined Scouse nous was that the national game, which we had loved so much, was on the cusp of going belly-up.

Football was going to implode into the biggest black hole this side of the Milky Way sucking in all the money-illuminated club owners such as Abramovich, Glazers, Gillett, Cowboy Joe from Mexico et al, plus Sky Television, and so leaving behind a wasteland of living the dreams turned into the mush of meltdown nightmares.

How wrong could we have been?

Well, so much, that while we are mates, we were probably distantly related to that bloke who said the Beatles would never catch on with their tight as a crab’s backside harmonies, catchy yeah, yeah yeah choruses and twanging guitars.

Just this week gaping jaws all around planet football dropped to the turf. New domestic broadcast rights for the top tier of English cost Sky Sports and BT Sport a gargantuan £5.1 billion. You can’t even say that quickly – it’s so mind- fracturing a figure to comprehend.

As Match Of The Day midweek presenter Gaby Logan posited that’s just over £10m for every game that is broadcast live under the new agreement which kicks in next year and runs to 2019.

That would mean that if a club in the 2016/17 campaign were to feature in ten live games they would net a Croesus-crop of £100m.

That’s not including the gate receipts from those games, any raft of sponsorship deals or other means of exploiting, sorry exacting, revenues.

No wonder there’s a queue of blue-chip investors waiting to board the gravy, or should that be jus-train of the Premier League.

If chairman, oligarchs, investment trusts and corporations are rubbing their hands with glee, what about the players? Already we have players on six-figure weekly salaries and I don’t mean £1,234.59p. Some squad members at any of six of the top seven clubs in the Premier League will currently be commanding seven-day salaries of £100,000-plus.

Once the new cash-tsunami rolls across the elite division there will not be too much of a surprise to see the first £500,000 a week wage.

Don’t believe me? Well, Spain’s titanic twosome of Ronaldo and Messi are currently costing their respective Real Madrid and Barce - lona employers north of £300,000, while Manchester City’s talisman Yaya Toure is said to be entitled to weekly wage slips – how quaint that notion seems – featuring the sum of £200,000-plus.

Riches all round then? Everyone rolling in artificial clover where the ball rolls as true as any proper grass pitch?

Well, no. The scuzzy end of the stick will no doubt still be left in the grip of the football fan.

If our elite clubs had any conscience about them they would have announced in tandem with the new imminent influx of largesse that ticket prices from the first day of the new deal will be at least halved. Whoosh – what was that? Oh aye, an airborne pig followed by a pink elephant tracing across the clouds on the 12th of Never.

As true as the name “York City" is followed by the word “nil” then clubs will continue to screw, shaft, short-change and scrag their own fans.

Buy as many replica kits as you like, trawl through interminably offer-deluged websites for ticket information for umpteen hours, embark on cross-country and trans-Europe pilgrimages to watch your teams at the most ungodly kick-off teams – dictated to by television companies, natch – it will make not a ha’pp’orth of difference. Your eternal, undying, unflinching emotional investment will be taken as a given..and it will be taken.

Now Frank, where are we playing in pre-season?